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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Tanard Jackson getting body, mind ready to play



Safety Tanard Jackson, back this week after a yearlong drug-related suspension, now has been through two practices since his return to the Bucs, and he's hit the ground running.

Jackson said his body feels good, but that one of the things he's working on is getting mentally ready to play. There have been some slight changes in the Bucs' defensive playbook since his departure last year, and much of the verbiage has changed, too.

"I'm just working my way in, getting adjusted to the scheme and what we’ve been doing around here, learning the playbook for the things I haven’t been around to see," Jackson said. "Slowly but surely. There’s not a lot of differences (in the scheme) but a lot of different terminology, which I’m learning."

There are also physical challenges associated with this comeback. While Jackson is considered particularly well-conditioned, he admits this return from suspension is not comparable to his 2009 return from a 4-game ban.

"I’m sure I’ll feel (soreness) tomorrow," he said. "Right now I actually feel pretty good.

"That’s a big difference. (Missing) four weeks, I went through training camp with the team, then I was away for four weeks and came back. Being away for a whole season and not making training camp, that’s a big difference. I’ll be feeling it."

Even so, the most important thing Jackson shared today was this: When asked whether he could play on Sunday if his coaches determine he's ready, he deadpanned: "Oh, yeah."

[Last modified: Thursday, October 13, 2011 3:36pm]


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