With the Jaguars slated to get training camp underway Thursday, third year defensive end Dante Fowler spoke Wednesday for the first time since his arrest in St. Pete on misdemeanor battery charges. The positive for he and Jags fans is that according to him, coach Doug Marrone and new front office boss, Tom Coughlin are backing him.
Fowler’s statement can barely be heard on this clip as he apologized at the team facility:
Dante Fowler delivers statement: pic.twitter.com/RGvNExup9e
— Brent Martineau (@BrentASJax) July 26, 2017
For those of you without Boze (free plug) Stereo Speakers, Fowler told the media: “I’d like to apologize to the team and city of Jacksonville for my actions. It won’t happen again. It was an incident that I’ve learned from. I just have to realize the situation that I’m in and what’s at stake. I have to be better.”
The former Gator All SEC pass rusher was arrested earlier this month for an altercation with a man in an apartment complex in St. Pete . That allegedly began with the man complaining about Fowler’s reckless driving and speeding in the complex. Fowler is alleged to have punched the man in the dispute and then, almost comically, picked up his bag of groceries and threw them into a nearby retention pond.
Back to Wednesday, a contrite Fowler said generally of his arrest, ““It was an incident I really have to learn from. I have to move on from it … I just have to realize the situation I’m in, what’s at stake.” He continued, “I could have taken the right approach. I took the wrong approach. I realize that.”
He took no follow up questions on the incident. Nor, on the information that has come to light after his arrest that Fowler not only has a prior arrest in 2016, but a total of nine traffic citations (most for speeding and/or reckless driving) over the last few years.
The other important takeaway from Fowler’s brief media session may be that he says he has not only met with newly promoted head coach Doug Marrone, but also V.P. of Football Operations, Tom Coughlin. He said Wednesday, “I told Tom I was definitely sorry and I do apologize for making the organization look like that and putting us in a situation like that because that’s not how we are as a team and that’s not how we are as an organization. We had a good talk.”
There is obviously a new regime’ and mindset in Jacksonville. And, Fowler had better be on his best behavior and giving full effort for the rest of 2017, or the next conversations with the those in charge will likely be big trouble.