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Steelers rookie arrested on 15 counts of DUI, resisting-arrest charges after car chase, wreck

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Alameda Ta'amu. (Getty Images)

Off weekends can be trouble in the NFL. Without a game to play on Sunday, the Steelers' Alameda Ta'amu, a rookie defensive lineman, got himself into a whole mess of trouble with Pittsburgh police early Sunday morning.

Ta'amu began the public-relations nightmare by driving a 2006 Lincoln Navigator the wrong way down a street on Pittsburgh's South Side at about 2:30 a.m. Sunday. From there, it was a cascade of illegality:

• He was observed swerving into other lanes, passing multiple vehicles, running red lights and speeding in a pedestrian-heavy zone.

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• He then refused several orders from police to stop the car and get out of the vehicle, apparently even driving his SUV straight at a couple of the officers and forcing them to dive out of the way. The officers drew their guns, but did not fire, according to the criminal complaint, "due to the large number of pedestrians and motorists on the sidewalks and roadway."

• He slammed into a parked vehicle, injuring the driver, who was still in the vehicle.

• He kept going, finally hitting several other cars so hard that he disabled his own SUV.

• He got out of the car, took off his shirt, and began to run from police.

• He was finally subdued in a parking lot -- at 6-foot-3, 348 pounds, he required multiple officers -- and handcuffed when he resisted arrest.

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• His blood-alcohol content was found to be .196 percent, more than twice Pennsylvania's legal limit of .08 percent.

Yeah, that ... that's not so good. Any one of those would be worthy of a harsh punishment from the league. Together? Put it this way: Ta'amu hasn't yet played this season, and that's not likely to change anytime soon. He was arrested on 15 counts and will face a preliminary hearing on Oct. 23.

''We are disappointed to hear about the situation regarding Alameda Ta'amu,'' Steelers GM Kevin Colbert said in a press release. ''We will gather more facts before providing any further comment.'' Seems a wise idea.

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