Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

New Buc Goldson takes charge

TAMPA — In the fall, he will produce tackles, interceptions, fumbles and highlight hits.

But for now, safety Dashon Goldson is making the Buccaneers better while nobody watches.

After the most sweltering practice of the offseason last week, when teammates evaporated into climate-controlled One Buc Place, Goldson took off his jersey, set his helmet on the ground and began scouring the field for a football.

"Don't we have one football on this field?" he asked incredulously until one was located.

Then before they could escape through the doors, Goldson locked eyes with cornerbacks Leonard Johnson and Danny Gorrer and let them know their day wasn't done.

"We need to catch some footballs," he said.

For the next 10 minutes, Goldson did the throwing and they did the catching until he was satisfied.

"Dashon has been a lot of fun to work with because he has a great football mind," Bucs coach Greg Schiano said. "He learns very well. And he cares a lot. He keeps those young two corners out there, and he's just throwing. No one asked him to do that. That's on him. And that's what veterans need to do.

"I'm glad he's ours."

Most of the attention on the team's rebuilt secondary has focused on former Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis and his recovery from a torn left ACL. If Revis is Revis, as the saying goes, he is, arguably, one of the top five defensive players in the league.

But the first piece added to improve last season's league-worst pass defense was Goldson, a 2012 first-team All-Pro who signed a five-year, $41.25 million contract in March.

Goldson, who turns 29 on Sept. 18, helped transform a 49ers franchise that suffered losing seasons from 2003-10 into one with appearances in the NFC title game the past two seasons and a Super Bowl berth last season, his seventh in the league.

San Francisco's fourth-round pick out of Washington in 2007 emerged as a player equally effective playing the run as the pass. His 14 career interceptions have come over the past four seasons.

Tampa Bay has eight players on its roster who have appeared in the Pro Bowl, including Goldson, Revis and defensive tackle Gerald McCoy.

"I've played on some teams that had some talent, and we didn't do so well," Goldson said. "It's really your mind-set. What do you really want out of this deal? Then getting it done.

"There are a lot of good football teams in this league. So what is going to separate you from these guys? Being in shape, of course. It's not about who runs the fastest, but rather who runs the fastest the longest. That's my mind-set, and I think we'll get it done."

Johnson, 23, a former Largo High quarterback who signed as an undrafted free agent last season, was pressed into service after the suspensions of cornerbacks Aqib Talib and Eric Wright. Johnson responded with three interceptions, a forced fumble and 41 tackles.

Gorrer, 27, who was with his fourth team in as many seasons, played in six games for the Bucs, recording one interception and six tackles.

It's uncertain where they will land on the depth chart this season. The team hopes to start Revis, second-year safety Mark Barron, Goldson and either Eric Wright or Johnthan Banks, the second-round pick in April's draft out of Mississippi State.

But Goldson does not care about that. His job, as he sees it, is to help develop young players and lead.

Whether anyone is watching or not.

"It's just something that has been in me since I was young," he said. "I was always a motivating guy. I always looked at myself as a guy who tried to lead out there. I know this is a young crowd we have out here.

"I'm just trying to … help out and share my experiences I've had. I want them to know it's okay to go out here and ask questions and especially for me to just try and shed a little light on them. I've played in the postseason now and have been a part of some good teams and some bad teams. I've got experience in a lot of areas."

New Buc Goldson takes charge 06/07/13 [Last modified: Saturday, June 8, 2013 12:02am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Minors also a training ground for umpires with big-league dreams

    The Heater

    Umpire Tom Fornarola, 23, left, and Taylor Payne, 24, facing, talk before the start of the Gulf Coast League game between the New York Yankees and the Detroit Tigers at the Tigertown complex in Lakeland, Fla. on Wednesday, July 5, 2017.
  2. For starters: Souza not in lineup vs. Rangers



  3. Remember that famous Fred McGriff TV commercial? He's back, in a parody


    If you've ever seen Fred McGriff's TV commerical for Tom Emanski's Defensive Drills video it will always be fresh in your mind, with the deadpan delivery and famously ill-fitting cap.

  4. Fennelly: Is Charlie Strong the anti-Freeze?


    The Hugh Sleaze era at Ole Mess is over.

    Hugh Freeze resigned as head football coach Thursday to avoid being fired by Mississippi school officials. For those of you who had NCAA violations and investigations in the pool, you were wrong. Nor was it the defamation lawsuit filed against the school by former Rebels …

    FILE - In this Sept. 5, 2016, file photo, Mississippi coach Hugh Freeze pauses during a timeout in the team's NCAA college football game against Florida State in Orlando, Fla. Freeze has resigned after five seasons, bringing a stunning end to a once-promising tenure. The school confirmed Freeze's resignation in a release Thursday night. Assistant Matt Luke has been named the interim coach. (AP Photo/John Raoux, File) NY176
  5. Rowdies part of a record-setting season for USL attendance


    ST. PETERSBURG — Although Rowdies fans haven't had many recent opportunities to show out at Al Lang, the United Soccer League turnstiles keep turning at a record rate.

    A Rowdies fan waves flags ahead of the first half of the game between Tampa Bay Rowdies and Orlando City B at Al Lang Stadium in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Saturday, March 25, 2017.