Jaguars’ DE Dante Fowler says his days of off-field trouble are over despite July arrest

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Jacksonville Jaguars jersey defensive end Dante Fowler jersey said his recent arrest on misdemeanor battery charges isn’t an indication of a maturity issue and pledged to stay out of any further trouble.

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Fowler, speaking publicly for the first time since the July 18 arrest in his hometown of St. Petersburg, Florida, apologized to the Jaguars organization and city and said he told executive vice president of football operations Tom Coughlin that he wants to be a role model instead of being viewed as a problem child.

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“I told Tom that I’m sorry. I told him that I apologize. I can’t make the organization look like that and put us in situations like that. That’s not us. That’s not how we are as a team. That’s not how we are as an organization. We had a good talk. I told them from here on out, nothing else will happen.”

Wholesale Dan McCullers-Sanders jersey Coach Doug Marrone said he’s wholesale jersey met with Fowler but did not want to disclose what was said. He also said any discipline from the team will be handled in-house.

“Any time something like that happens, no matter who it is, you’re disappointed,” Marrone said. “For me it’s a little bit bigger than that. I believe that we represent something even more so than the organization. We represent a sport, a league, so I think whenever those things happen no matter who it may be I think that it’s concerning.”

Three of Fowler’s teammates also spoke on Wednesday — linebacker Paul Posluszny jersey jersey, tight end Marcedes Lewis jersey and defensive end Calais Campbell jersey jersey — and each said they are willing to help Fowler in any way.

“I take a lot of pride in being a leader, but a lot of it is I just care about my teammates and Dante is a good kid,” Campbell said. “Just need to worry about those guys doing all the right things and understand the possibilities are in front of them. Of course, I’ve talked to him, tried to motivate him, give him encouragement, pick him up when he needs to be picked up and vice versa when it comes to the football field.”

According to a St. Petersburg Police Department statement, Fowler was arrested July 18 and charged with misdemeanor battery and criminal mischief after he hit a man, knocked off his glasses and stepped on them, then threw the victim’s grocery bag into a lake. The statement said the incident began after the victim made a comment about Fowler’s driving through the parking lot at a local apartment complex.

“At the end of the day, it could have went down a totally different way,” Fowler said. “I could have [taken] the right approach. I took the wrong approach, and I realize that I’m wrong for that. Like I said, it won’t happen again.”

That was Fowler’s third off-field incident in 17 months. He also was in arrested Miami Beach in March 2016 and charged with assault against a police officer/EMT and resisting arrest without violence. The misdemeanor charges were dropped in December 2016 after he completed a pretrial intervention program.

A month before that, a video surfaced on TMZ.com of Fowler apparently refereeing a fight between his girlfriend and the mother of his child. The NFL investigated the matter, but Fowler was not disciplined by the league. He released a statement apologizing for his actions.

In addition, Fowler has been cited for 10 moving violations in four counties in Florida in the past two years — including instances in which he was issued tickets for driving 98 mph in a 55 mph zone in Jacksonville and 99 mph in a 70 mph zone in Alachua County.

Yet the third overall draft pick in 2015 says he does not have a problem with maturity.

“It’s just some things, just learning and growing,” Fowler said. “I’m a professional. People are going to push me to that point. I just have to be the bigger person and realize who I am and do that. Maturity is not a problem.

“I’m actually growing a lot, especially with this new structure [under Coughlin and coach Doug Marrone] and everything like that. Starting to carve me into the person I want to be, the professional I want to be. It’s just a bump in the road that I have to get over and put past me and show you guys, show the organization, show the city, that I’m a role model and I want to go in that route and not go in another bad route.”