Site Claims Dashon Goldson Not “Reliable”

February 15th, 2014


In recent weeks, numbers crunchers at Pro Football Focus have spent hours playing with their Excel spreadsheets and watching recorded TV broadcasts of games to cobble together a comprehensive look at the Bucs. And one thing the spreadsheeters don’t like is Dashon “The Hawk” Goldson.

The hard-hitting safety who gives NFL suits irritable bowel syndrome is not the same stud many saw play for the 49ers a couple of years ago. So much so that Khaled Elsayed believes Goldson is below average.

It may surprise some to see Dashon Goldson, the $8M per annum man, getting a below average notch. Well we’ve always been of the opinion he was made to look better than he was in the 49ers’ defense, whereas he was found out somewhat playing in Tampa Bay. He was our 81st-ranked safety last year, and while some of that can be attributed to injuries and six penalties, it’s worth noting he missed one tackle for every 5.9 attempted, 17th-worst in the league. He needs to step up because as last lines of defenses go, he’s not a reliable one.

Did Goldson have a good season last year? Absolutely not. For reasons that are not quite clear, Goldson seemed intent to hit his way, even though NFL rules have changed. As Joe’s dad used to always say, it’s one thing to be dumb and another thing to be stubborn and dumb. Goldson is a smart guy so Joe just cannot understand why Goldson couldn’t or wouldn’t adjust to the current powder-puff ways of playing NFL defense.

Heavy fines did not to deter Goldson. Was that Goldson or was that coaching? Maybe a little of both. At some point last year, former Bucs commander Greg Schiano should have sent Goldson a message by benching him, giving Goldson a very blunt hint that he was hurting his team as much as his bank account.

But Joe has faith. Combined with a new year and a new, defensive-minded coaching staff, Joe believes Lovie Smith, himself a former secondary coach, will be able to get through to Goldson.

36 Responses to “Site Claims Dashon Goldson Not “Reliable””

  1. Kalind Says:

    I’ll put that one on Schiano as well. No problemo

  2. Snook Says:

    His rookie replacement in SF made the Pro Bowl in 2013. That’s all we need to know.

    We bought the product of a system. Without the system.

  3. Otto Says:

    Add a little pass rush and maybe he’ll be a probowler again. Good point about the missed tackles though.

  4. scotty Says:

    @ Snook

  5. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Kalind, Goldson had the same issue in san fran. So it is not Schiano’s fault.

    Goldson was brought in to be a hard hitter…but within the rules.

    He was targetted unfairly by the refs, but because he brought it on himself in san fran. Saying he would not change was stupid of him. That’s the same as saying “screw the refs.”

  6. Chef Paul Says:


    Unacceptable. 81st in the league don’t deserve a nickname. Unless that nickname is Pigeon.

  7. stratobuc Says:

    Its a slow month – who cares what these idiots write? I’ll take him.

  8. Macabee Says:

    Here is a scenario that I hope the Bucs consider before the draft – trading Dashon Goldson. Now that Gill Byrd is the Bucs DB coach and his son All-Pro Jairus Byrd is a free agent, here is something to consider.

    PFF has Goldson graded as one of the worst FS in the league. The reason is probably due to the fact that the Bucs have him playing SS. The Bucs have a SS in Mark Barron. They don’t need two on the field at the same time in Lovie’s Cover-2 type defense.

    If the Bucs think that Goldson is a marked man or he will never adjust to the new rules, there is somebody out there that may be interested. That somebody is the SF 49ers who is almost certain to lose SS Donte Whitner to FA. Goldson is a FS, but is even bigger than Whitner and can play both positions and knows the SF defense. And Goldson still likes SF and they like him as he visited them on-site during his 2013 suspension. The 49ers have three 3rd round picks – one a comp pick for losing Dashon Goldson in 2013 FA.

    Jairus Byrd is a better FS on paper. His 4 year career stats exceed Goldson’s 5 year career stats in every category. He is a 3 time pro bowler and a 3 time all-pro FS. And Byrd is not a marked man. If it were possible to get Byrd (Dashon money would certainly do it), a trade of Goldson will not be difficult at all – almost a certainty. And the Bucs would get an All-Pro FS, a 3rd round pick back, and no hit to cap space!

  9. The_Buc_Realist Says:


    How many of these so called Pro-bowlers that you kept counting last year actually played like one???

  10. Bucfan#37 Says:

    Goldson’s play this past season did’nt match the hype of his admirers. Over rated and over paid, an over reach. He hit the jackpot and is laughing all the way to the bank.

  11. Brandon Says:

    Macabee-Players that don’t come close to living up to bloated contracts are not tradeable. The Buccaneers were the only team stupid enough to offer a non-elite safety $8 mil per season, what is the chance there is a team stupid enough to not only take on that contract but ALSO offer up something in return? Perhaps another player with a bloated contract, but that’s it.

    This just shows how screwed up the Bucs were.. investing too heavily in OGs… and investing their money on defense on the secondary instead of the front four.

  12. Brandon Says:

    I honestly think it is more likely that the Bucs acquire Richie Incognito AND Jon Martin than finding a trade partner for Dashon Goldson.

    The good news? Playing more T-2 will help Goldson. He is a bit stiff in coverage and not a terribly instinctive athlete… having him split the field into halves will certainly help him so he’s not being forced to play single high. Also, because T-2 safeties are often interchangeable, he may roll up into the box as the 8th defender more frequently.

  13. The_Buc_Realist Says:

    Don’t forget Michael Clayton, Kellen Winslow, And boat load of others that were Way overpaid. This is why the Bucs have been one of the bottom team the last 5 years. Hopefully that changes starting this year!!!

    Go Bucs!!!

  14. Architek Says:

    Price verse value and the latter wins. I like Gholson but this should be a proving year for him and he should really work on his craft, moving in space and adjusting to a new system with the league rules.

    I will say this too – there is a sample of the fine line and Seattle played on that fine line. You can be physical without penalties and lay down the law without recourse.

    There is no reason why Gholson cannot do what kam chancellor does.

  15. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I think Goldson will do better with Lovie…..I also think he could be traded to SF….If they could restructure his contract making it longer-term-less-per-year deal….it might work.

  16. Harry Says:

    This is not a good sign, for sure. PFF tends to skew #’s sometimes, i.e.; they have never been nice to D Joseph. But in the very least, it indicates Goldson is greatly overpaid for what he produces.

  17. Cody Says:

    I wont put the all of the blame on Goldson…he was targeted by the league… IMO the only “illegal” hit I saw last year was the 1st game against the Jets when he leveled Cumberland…All of the other hits coulda went either way…I consider Goldson an old fashion aggressive head-hunter but now-a-days that’s considered “dirty”…I guess guys like Ronnie Lott and John Lynch were dirty players too…

    The bottom line is if Goldson is gonna survive in this Powder Puff league we call the NFL he’s gonna have to retrain himself how to tackle within the new rules…If he cant do that he’ll find himself out if the league…

  18. Jon Says:

    I wish PFF had a team to run, then they’d use all this nonsense and realize that the NFL is a team game. It’s not baseball, sure maybe here and there this stuff makes sense. Tell me this how does the person know what the players full responsibility is? They couldn’t know

  19. Chris Says:

    I was never on board with the signing. My friend who is a niner fan laughed at me when Tampa gave him that money. Well put? Eric Reid came in and the production and safety play didn’t miss a beat.

    Goldson was a product of a system and idk how Tampa missed the 6 final games (including post season) where goldson was just getting torched. He can’t cover which is the role of the FS. Now were stuck with his salary.

  20. BucsQcCity Says:

    Just trade goldson to clear cap space… Great leader, great intensity but he is marked…

    We need a Ballhawk, Barron will take care of the hits

  21. SAMCRO Says:

    There’s a big difference in taking a straight line to make a tackle to all of sudden having to corral and surround a runner. As last line of defense Goldson was holding his own in the first half of the season until after all the questionable penalties you could tell he began to let up in the second half which resulted in getting beat more often. By letting up he lost his angles. Now Goldson is having to learn flag football and still somehow learn new angles to make a tackle.

    It’s like driving at night in deer country. When you see a deer crossing the road in front you sometimes that split second tap on the brake can make the difference in whether you hit or miss the deer. Just like tackling a ball carrier at full speed running toward you. It’s much easier to take a timed straight line hard hit to tackle than to hesitate and dance.

  22. Destinjohnny Says:

    Not great in coverage but love his intensity

  23. Buc1987 Says:

    We can’t have Goldson on the team for one simple reason.

    Fans keep getting his name confused with Gholston.

  24. Macabee Says:


    The Bucs have already paid the premium on Goldson’s contract. He would more than be willing to restructure the roster bonuses. Typical NFL restructure – takes place all the time. He loves that place and they love him. Remember the strange love fest that went on during his suspension. And for the 49ers it’s like taking on a one year contract which is no risk because all vested veteran contracts are guaranteed for that year if they are on the roster week one. Would they give up the 3rd comp pick they got for him this year? They will have to use a draft pick higher than a 3 to get a proven player like Goldson who flourished in their system. Piece of cake! I’m betting they will take that deal.

    Below is Goldson’s contract:

    3/13/2013: Signed a five-year, $41.25 million contract. The deal contains $22 million guaranteed, including a first-year roster bonus of $4.5 million, Goldson’s first- and second-year salaries, and a fully guaranteed 2014 roster bonus of $3 million. 2014: $6 million (+ $3 million roster bonus), 2015-2016: $7.5 million (+ $500,000 workout bonus), 2017: $6.75 million (+ $500,000 workout bonus), 2018: Free Agent

  25. Bucs4lyfe Says:

    in lovie’s defense is he really the guy who can cover the deep part of the field because no one should have been calling him the hawk last year, he doesnt hit hard, cause fumbles just racks up penalties for hits that receivers brush off like ants. with what he’s being paid along with the fact that mark barron is the same kind of safety but better, this new regime is probably trying to figure out a way to off load him more than than carl nicks…..cant wait to see what these high priced players are gonna do in a real NFL system, we sucked running schiano’s college program in the pros

  26. Mumbles Says:

    I don’t know if we can trade this guy or not, but I’m all for it!

  27. CoachG Says:

    The Bucs have Goldson playing the centerfielding Earl Thomas role but he is closer to Kam Chancellor than Earl Thomas in terms of playing style, so we really have a SS playing centerfield FS, this is a fair critique from PFF.

  28. Martinii Says:

    You have obviously done your homework (A+.) A trade makes since and both teams would benefit. The money is right and it would be nice to recoup that 3rd round pick. I actually felt sorry for Goldson last year. The guy is a solid FS and a old time hitter. Unfortunately he played out of position and thanks to the new league rules is a marked man. I had hoped that Smith and Byrd could coach him back to Pro bowl form, but your analogy certainly offers a viable alternative.

  29. SAMCRO Says:


    *golf clap* bravo!!

  30. Lou. Says:

    How can we possibly win with the 81st rated safety in the division?

  31. Owlykat Says:

    Macabee has been one of the smartest posters on Pewter Report too and he is right on with his post here too. The Bucs need an All Pro FS and not a redundant SS. The Bucs secondary looked better to me when Goldton was serving his penalties and Tandy, who is our backup Free Safety, was in there. If we can trade Golston to the 49ers and get our third round pick back, I say do it, and especially if we can use that money and grab an All Pro FS. If we have to keep him he has to watch Chancellor’s film from all last year and forced to alter his game or ride the Bench. Schiano was the worst Buc Coach ever and likely part of the problem too!

  32. Evan Says:


    We were coming off the worst pass D and secondary in team history at the time. The signing was forced and with a 7-9 record with additions to the secondary, we were supposed to succeed. Let the man justify his signing this year then we’ll see. Also who would’ve saw the bad play of the OG’s ? It’s all hindsight talk.

    Although, jairus Byrd playing for his dad is an interesting thought..

  33. Eric S Says:

    The photo of the hawk cracked me up. I do hope Goldson learns this yr. It was almost like he was trying to prove a point. Very stubborn.

  34. Capt. Tim Says:

    As I asked after game one
    Why do we have 2 strong safeties, and no Free safety?
    The Hawk is a better Strong safety than Barron. But Barron can’t play Free safety- as he has no coverage skills at all.

    Barron can only be used as an “” in the box” safety. He’s really a small LB.
    He can’t cover.

    To be successful, the team needs a strong safety who can also cover( Goldson),
    And a free safety who excells in coverage( we don’t have that guy)
    Barron will be kept, to save face.

    Dying to see if Lovie can undo the mess he inherited at Safety.
    One playing out of posistion, one not really a safety.
    Both Aquired as high profile players. Both getting payed a lot.

    Should be interesting

  35. McBuc Says:

    Maybe the Shiano scheme made him look bad, maybe this is the case for many guys.

  36. SeanyMac in SC Says:

    Agreed…give Macabee his props. Dude brings value to the posts.

    I think Licht will “correct” this over paid free agent situation all over the rooster.