October 18, 2012; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers free safety Dashon Goldson (38) celebrates after intercepting a pass against the Seattle Seahawks in the third quarter at Candlestick Park. The 49ers defeated the Seahawks 13-6. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are considered the favorite for Dashon Goldson, as we reported last night. That news was essentially confirmed today when it was reported that the Buccaneers would host Goldson for a free agent visit, and that Tampa would be his first destination. Here’s the tweet announcing the news:
This is excellent news for Bucs fans who want Goldson, as it means the former 49ers Pro Bowl Safety could come to town and sign a deal, giving no other teams any hope of securing his services. This also means that the work done over the largely useless “legal tampering” period was simply to scout out interest, rather than to hammer out details. Because unlike some of the other massive deals struck today, the Buccaneers are not offering a blank check to free agents. Goldson wants to get paid, and the Buccaneers have the cash to make that happen, but only at a mutually beneficial price.
So will Goldson sign on the dotted line on his visit? He’ll have a chance to see what he needs to see and meet who he needs to meet, but ultimately it comes down to money. If he has a reasonable number in mind, and the Buccaneers are willing to agree to it, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the safety holding up a red jersey in the next few days. But even if he leaves town without signing, it’s not a hopeless cause. Goldson is motivated by the dollar, and if he doesn’t find something better, Tampa could remain his best option. The Eagles have money to spend, and the Lions have interest in Goldson, but the Buccaneers seem to be the front runners, and there’s a reason Dashon is coming to the Bay Area first.
The lack of state income tax in the state of Florida is hopefully a bonus, but in the end, the dealings that go on in these meetings can come down to any number of details. We’ll be sure to keep you updated on any news that breaks, and give our take. My opinion at this point is that the Buccaneers are likely to keep Goldson in Tampa for a press conference, as this visit combined with a reliable journalist citing serious interest means Mark Dominik isn’t playing around about getting defensive backs.
Rick Stroud tweeted this bit of information, along with revealing that the Buccaneers had sent a private plane to pick up Goldson. The signs are very promising. Stay tuned for more information as it’s made available.