- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 21, 2015

As the Washington Redskins prepare to face off against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday, free safety Dashon Goldson has a head start, at least as it pertains to familiarity.

“I spent two years there. I developed some friendships. I had some good coaches,” Goldson said. “It’ll be good to see them.”

Goldson’s time in Tampa Bay didn’t go exactly as planned. After Pro Bowl seasons with the San Francisco 49ers in 2011 and 2012, Goldson cashed in on a five-year deal worth up to $41.25 million with the Buccaneers.

The University of Washington product compiled nearly $500,000 in fines and served a one-game suspension for the punishing hits he delivered during his first season in Tampa Bay.

In the offseason, Goldson underwent surgery to repair a damaged right toe. When he returned, Tampa Bay had a new coach in Lovie Smith, and Goldson didn’t fit well into his defensive scheme. His numbers continued to decline from his Pro-Bowl seasons.

“It was just bad,” Goldson said in September. “I was just never in it.”

The Redskins acquired Goldson from the Buccaneers this summer in exchange for a sixth-round draft pick. Tampa Bay also agreed to pay the $4 million in guaranteed money remaining on the 31-year-old’s contract.

Despite the rocky seasons, Goldson said Wednesday that his history with the Buccaneers will not affect his mindset heading into Sunday.

“I’m approaching this game just like any other game,” Goldson said. “I don’t let my emotions get the best of me.”

At the same time, Goldson, the Redskins’ defensive captain, said he’s looking forward to one opportunity that Sunday presents him with.

“When you’re in practice, you don’t really go live against your teammates that much,” Goldson said. “I got a couple guys that I used to talk trash to at [Buccaneers] practice. It’ll be good to go out there and put the hat on them.”

• Dan Roth can be reached at droth@washingtontimes.com.

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