The fines and suspensions have finally got to Dashon Goldson.
The hard-hitting Tampa Bay Buccaneers safety has made the bold choice of hiring a tackling coach for the upcoming season.
That coach is Bobby Hosea, owner of Train ‘Em Up Academy. His website describes him as “’The World’s Foremost Authority’ on injury preventive tackle training.”
It’s a smart move by Goldson to begin working with Hosea. Last season, Goldson was fined a whopping $455,000 for illegal hits. He was also suspended for one game (with his forfeit in earnings accounted for in the previous number) and also had another suspension overturned on appeal.
“I said this can’t be cool because every time I hit somebody I’m getting a fine,” Goldson told Anwar Richardson of Yahoo Sports. “At that point, I realized I have to figure something out.”
The other concern for Goldson is not just the fines and suspensions: it’s the effect his play had on the Bucs defense last year. Often his penalties would keep drives alive, keeping the defense on the field longer and sometimes resulting in the Bucs giving up points.
Before his first year in Tampa, Goldson had drawn a league high 15 personal foul flags since the 2010 season, a flag that comes with a 15-yard penalty. By the time the 2013 season had concluded, that number had climbed even higher as Goldson was flagged more than half a dozen times for personal fouls.
Some of those flags were questionable however, as Goldson’s reputation was often his un-doing. Sometimes it seemed as though referees were targeting Goldson.
The 29-year-old has made his living off of being a big hitter and that’s ok. However, with Roger Goodell stamping his authority on the concussion issue, players who have the same mindset as Goldson need to be more wary on the field.
Yet, Goldson made his name in football by being a big-hitter and it seems unfair that he has to adjust his game so that he can stay on the field. Goldson had a pretty good season in 2013 as he made 72 tackles and also had an interception but admits that the fines and suspensions impacted his play last year.
“This is what got me my deal. This is what got me my name,” Goldson told Richardson. “This is how you make a name for yourself in this league. You set yourself apart by standing out. What I was doing was making a hit. Just playing hard and playing football the way it’s supposed to be played.”
It’s an important, and responsible, step for Goldson to take. While it could be argued he’s doing damage on the field, having Goldson in the secondary is a good thing for the Bucs.
With Goldson taking the necessary steps to learn how to tackle, rather than leading with his shoulder and laying the thunder, Goldson should see his bank account balance remain in good-health. Thus, the Bucs will reap the benefits of that.