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Da'Quan Bowers gun charges: defensive end will not go to jail

Streeter Lecka

It looks like Da'Quan Bowers will be available for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this season. The defensive end was charged with several felonies after declaring a handgun at La Guardia airport, as carrying a handgun is illegal in the state of New York. But according to Roy Cummings of the Tampa Tribune Bowers' charges have been reduced to a disorderly conduct violation, to which he pleaded guilty which resulted in a $250 fine with a $120 surcharge. As far as we can tell this kind of reduction in charges is routine in cases like these, which appear to occur on a daily basis in New York.

That should end this ordeal for the talented defensive end, who the Buccaneers planned to lean on as their starting defensive end this season. Bowers has 4.5 sacks in his injury-plagued two-year career, but appeared to hit his stride late last season as he got healthy. He's easily the most talented defensive end on the roster, but it remains to be seen whether he can translate that talent into on-field production.

One person may throw a wrench in the Bucs' plans, though, and that is Roger Goodell who could still suspend Bowers. This is Bowers' first offense, though, and he has been a choir boy off the field otherwise. With the charge resulting from what appears to be an honest misunderstanding it's unlikely that Bowers will face league discipline. That would leave Bowers free to do what the Buccaneers drafted him for: sack the quarterback.

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