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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Turning a corner: Bucs' Johnthan Banks eager for fresh start



Johnthan Banks went from being a second-round pick as the Thorpe Award winner at Mississippi State and leading the team in interceptions in his second season to a bench warmer on the worst secondary in the National Football League.

Last season, he suffered a knee problem and eventually lost his job through demotion or injury to Tim Jennings, Mike Jenkins and finally Jude Adjei-Barimah.

"Man, it’s been tough. It’s my fourth year and I’ve had three different head coaches," Banks said. "But I mean, that’s life. It happens. You’ve got to adapt. You’ve got to live and learn. I’m looking forward to learning this defense. (Defensive backs coach Brett) Maxie, knows what he wants, and coach (Jon) Hoke, knows what techniques they want. Just trying to get them honed down and go out there and play 100 percent full speed."

Banks has had a new defensive scheme to learn year every dating back to high school.

"That’s crazy. All through college I had four defensive coordinators and here, in the pros, it’s going to be my fourth defensive coordinator," Banks said. "I mean, it’s life. I’m enjoying it. I thank God for the opportunity."

In a perfect world, Banks said he would thrive in there were continuity in the coaching staff on defense. The Bucs allowed opposing quarterbacks to complete nearly 70 percent of their passes with 31 touchdowns.

Banks says he feels as if his career has hit the re-start button.

"It’s a new beginning because these coaches, they don’t know a lot about me," Banks said. "Coach Koetter, he does, because he played against me when he was (the offensive coordinator) in Atlanta. I’m just out here competing and having fun and whatever happens, happens.

"I don’t know if that makes you a better player. Sometimes as a defensive back, you want to get into the system and be in that system, learn the nuances, learning the new techniques, it can kind of mess you over. I haven’t backpedaled for three years. Things like that."

[Last modified: Wednesday, April 27, 2016 5:05pm]


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