TAMPA — S Tanard Jackson is an impact player.
Not just for his bone-crushing hits but because he creates turnovers.
Despite serving a four-game suspension to start the 2009 season, Jackson forced two fumbles and tied for the club lead with five interceptions.
Jackson said he plans to take his game to a Pro Bowl level and is eager to see what kind of numbers he can produce in a full season.
"When I play well like that and make those splash plays, our team plays well and benefits from that," Jackson said. "I'm excited to be here for all 16 this year and start out better this year, hopefully, and get this thing rolling. We're back to the basics this year with Raheem (Morris), and a lot of us feel very comfortable. We're excited all across the board, and I think the guys are happy to be out here. It starts now in the offseason program."
Jackson is using that time to build some chemistry with free agent S Sean Jones, who is battling Sabby Piscitelli for a starting job.
"It's similar to the situation we had when Will Allen was here and Jermaine Phillips was here," Jackson said. "We had a rotation going. Sean is a great player, he's shown that in the previous places that he's played. He's a good acquisition to our defense.
"It's a process. It starts now, though, playing together, communicating, getting the calls, trusting that he'll be in the position he's supposed to be in. It starts right now, so it's an ongoing process. It will never stop and will continue through the season."
SMITH AN INSPIRATION: WR Preston Parker, a former Florida State star, says seeing how Pro Bowl KR Clifton Smith can make the team as an undrafted free agent gives him reason to believe he can do the same.
"He can be the next guy to come on and make the 53 (-man roster)," Smith said. "You never know. It's possible."
Smith said being in the same situation can help him give Parker advice.
"I know how hard it is when you first come in, you want to impress so many people, want to give it your all," Smith said. "And you want to go out there and don't mess up. You've just got to tell him to just go out there and play. Your work ethic is what got you here, your athletic ability is what got you here. Just play the game."
NIGHT FANFEST: It'll be cool to be Bucs fan.
At least that's the idea behind the team's first-ever evening FanFest that will be held from 4:30 to 9 p.m. on June 19 at Raymond James Stadium.
The festivities will include photo and autograph opportunities, performances by the Bucs cheerleaders, coaches' corner sessions, interactive games, discounted concessions and more.
"FanFest is so special to us and our fans because it signals the start of a new season," co-chairman Bryan Glazer said. "Fans get to meet their heroes, and our organization gets to thank our loyal fans."
The Bucs ticket office staff will be on hand to process orders on the spot for Select-A-Seat opportunities.