Bucs ‘welcome’ probe of Freeman info leaks

Updated: October 14, 2013, 11:59 AM ET


By
Pat Yasinskas | ESPN.com


TAMPA, Fla. — Tampa Bay Buccaneers general manager Mark Dominik and coach Greg Schiano both said Sunday that the team would be open to an NFL investigation into how it was revealed that former quarterback Josh Freeman was in the league’s substance-abuse program.

“We’re not afraid of an investigation,” Dominik told The Tampa Tribune. “We would welcome it.”

Dominik’s comments came after USA Today Sports reported that an investigation by the NFL Players Association revealed that Schiano discussed Freeman’s situation with other players. The NFLPA wants the league to conduct a joint investigation because union officials then would be able to question Schiano and other team officials.

The league issued a statement on the matter Sunday.

“We take the confidentiality provision of the policy as seriously as the union and will vigorously pursue any leads the union provides,” the NFL said. “However, such information should be shared confidentially with our office rather than inappropriately leaked to the media before the investigation has been concluded into the matter.”

Freeman was released by the Buccaneers on Oct. 3 and now plays for the Minnesota Vikings. Schiano, when asked previously if he was the one who leaked information about Freeman’s status, said “absolutely not.”

“We as an organization look forward to cooperating with the NFL and the NFLPA,” Schiano said after Sunday’s 31-20 loss to Philadelphia. “I’ve already commented on it and we’ll leave it at that.”

Freeman said in a statement after the reports surfaced that he has a prescription for Adderall to treat ADHD; however, last year he accidentally took Ritalin, which triggered a positive test. As a result of the positive test he submitted to frequent drug screenings, leading to his placement in Stage 1 of the league’s drug program.

  • Previously covered NFC South for ESPN.com
  • Covered Panthers for The Charlotte Observer from 1999-2008
  • Began journalism career with The Tampa Tribune in 1990

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