Buffalo Bills general manager John Butler acknowledged the seriousness of the drunken driving charges against Bruce Smith Tuesday and at the same time supported the team's defensive end in a statement released by the team.
"Bruce's attorney will handle all of the legal ramifications in this situation, but I would like to say that as an organization, the Buffalo Bills are very conscious of the seriousness of these charges," Butler said. "We have been very outspoken against drinking and driving. If these allegations prove to be true, I am certain that Bruce will assume responsibility for his actions."
Smith was arrested early Sunday morning in Virginia Beach, Va., on charges of driving under the influence and refusal to take a Breathalyzer test.
"We have always admired Bruce for his tremendous athletic ability," Butler said. "But more importantly, we have admired him for the tremendous family man that he is. We will continue to monitor this situation and we look forward to Bruce's reporting to training camp."
Coach Marv Levy said he had spoken with Smith by telephone, as had Butler.
Tuesday marked the last of two-a-day practices for the Bills. The team held eight days of two-a-day practices, which is Levy's limit. He thinks a coach gets diminishing returns from more than eight two-a-days.
Cornerback Jeff Burris limped off the field after twisting his left knee in the morning no-pads workout. Burris said the injury was minor and he would be back to practice within a day or two. Defensive end Phil Hansen twisted his knee in the afternoon workout.
The Bills are scheduled to practice at 2:30 p.m. today and Thursday.
Eric Moulds made a couple of good catches in the morning workout, one a leaping sideline grab of a Todd Collins pass in the two-minute drill and the other an end zone grab after Collins rolled out and stepped up in the pocket. Kurt Schulz had a good interception of a deep sideline throw by Collins.
Tackle Corey Louchiey and end Juan Hammonds got into a tussle in afternoon one-on-one pass rushing drills. Rookie safety Sean Woodson had a good deep pass breakup on 11-on-11 drills, and linebacker Marlo Perry had a good breakup on a pass for tight end Tony Cline near the goal line.
The Bills had two penalties Saturday in Denver for not having the required seven players lined up on the line of scrimmage. One was on the first offensive play of the game. The other nullified a TD pass by Billy Joe Hobert to Chris Brantley.
"Our system is very complex as to who's on or off the line of scrimmage," Levy said. "I was almost glad we made a few of those mistakes -- not when we lose a touchdown from them. But I think we can learn from them."
Levy said he thought center Dusty Zeigler fared well in his preseason debut.
"Dusty Zeigler played an excellent game," Levy said. "He had one flaw. He made a wrong call and by the time he recovered to get his man he was off balance and got bowled over and held his man. But he played beyond what I would have expected. The same with Ruben (Brown). He made an error on the first series (a sack by Michael Dean Perry) but played well after that."
Levy said he regretted the fact that Denver did not run any blitzes at the Bills. He was hoping for exposure to blitzes.
Nose tackle Shawn Price, still out of action due to a broken bone near his elbow, probably will start the season on the physically unable to perform list, Levy said.
"I was told it would be four months before we could count on him," Levy said. "That would mean Oct. 1. If he goes on PUP before the season, he wouldn't be allowed to practice for six weeks into the season. That looks like the likely situation for him."