Despite arrest on DUI charge, Nate Hobbs of Las Vegas Raiders expected to play against Los Angele...

ByPaul Gutierrez via ESPN logo
Wednesday, January 5, 2022
ESPN

HENDERSON, Nev. -- Las Vegas Raiders rookie nickel cornerback Nate Hobbs, who was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of DUI early Monday morning, is expected to play Sunday night in a potential playoff elimination game against the Los Angeles Chargers, according to interim coach Rich Bisaccia.

"Obviously, we take that extremely serious, organizationally and certainly within our team," Bisaccia said Wednesday. "So based on what we've learned, at this time, we expect Nate to play. It's a legal matter and other than that I have really nothing else and we'll leave it at that."

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department said Monday that it received a call early that morning that a driver was asleep in a vehicle parked on the exit ramp of a parking garage. The driver was identified as Hobbs. He failed a field sobriety test, according to the department, and was transported to the Clark County Detention Center before being booked for DUI.

Hobbs' attorneys, David Z. Chesnoff and Richard A. Schonfeld, contested the charge a day later.

"The facts and circumstances related by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department to the news media leave serious concerns that this does not qualify as a DUI under Nevada law," they said.

Hobbs, a fifth-round draft pick out of Illinois, was arrested two months and one day after receiver Henry Ruggs III was involved in a fiery, high-speed car crash that claimed the lives of a 23-year-old woman and her dog. Ruggs, who is also represented by Chesnoff and Schonfeld, was cut by the Raiders hours after the wreck. He is facing up to 50 years in prison on felony DUI and reckless-driving charges.

Last year, hours after a season-finale victory at Denver, running back Josh Jacobs was arrested for DUI after a single-vehicle collision near the Las Vegas airport. Charges never came, though.

Hobbs has played well for Las Vegas with an interception, two passes defensed, a forced fumble and a sack among his 67 tackles, which rank fourth on the team, in 15 games.

The Raiders (9-7) can clinch their first playoff spot since 2016, their second since 2002, with a win over the Chargers (9-7). They also can clinch if the Indianapolis Colts lose at the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Pittsburgh Steelers lose at the Baltimore Ravens earlier in the day. And if the Colts lose to the Jaguars, both the Raiders and Chargers would get in by tying each other Sunday night.