PewterReport.com caught up with Tanard Jackson moments after his released was made public by the Buccaneers. Jackson said he was surprised by his release and hopes to land in Washington.
Former Buccaneers safety Tanard Jackson wasn’t just a little surprised by his release due to a failed physical on Tuesday morning – more along the lines of stunned. Jackson, who had shoulder surgery in January, told PewterReport.com minutes after the announcement of his release was made public that he didn't see the roster move coming.
“I can’t speak for everyone but myself. I was shocked, but I had to accept it and swallow it and take it, and move on in stride,” Jackson said. “Was I shocked? Yes. It is part of this business.”
Current Redskins general manager Bruce Allen was with the Buccaneers when Jackson was drafted in the fourth round out of Syracuse in 2007. Along with former Bucs head coach Raheem Morris, who is now the secondary coach in Washington, an opportunity to play in D.C. could be in Jackson’s future.
“I would definitely be open to rejoining with Bruce Allen – Mr. Allen – and Coach Morris up there,” said Jackson, a Maryland native. “But there is no guarantee with that just because he (Allen) drafted me and I played with Coach Morris. I’m just going to keep my eyes open and see whatever the best situation is for me and I’ll take.”
The organization wasn’t overly pleased with the way Jackson was handling the rehab of his surgically repaired shoulder, but Jackson believes there were other reasons that contributed to his release.
“[Bucs general manager Mark Dominik] did mention that he didn’t like the way that I wasn’t there the first week of the opening offseason workouts,” Jackson said. “But it was more about going in a different direction. It wasn’t about the rehab thing. The way it was explained to me was they wanted to move in a different direction.
“He didn’t explain it in detail, but I am assuming there was a change and I guess with him [Dominik] working with Coach [Greg] Schiano that they were moving in a different direction and going with their philosophy of building through the draft. I don’t know what it was, but it was explained to me they were moving in a different direction.”
Dominik did confirm to PewterReport.com and the local media that Jackson's release was not due to his past drug use or any failed drug tests.
While many suspected that Jackson wasn’t 100 percent last season, few knew the severity of the injuries Jackson has endured. Jackson elaborated on his physical health in his conversation with PewterReport.com.
“Last year to sum it up, I was playing hurt,” Jackson said. “I didn’t want to talk about it and make excuses for myself or our team. That wouldn’t do anything for the team or me. But I was hurt. I had shoulder surgery after the season. I was playing with a torn rotator cuff, and had two bad hamstrings. I laid it all out on the field. After those two first games where I kind of started off with a bang, my legs … just being away from football that long, it kicked in.”
Jackson appeared to be taking his sudden release in stride and looks forward to surfacing with another team soon. Despite the fact that he was suspended by the NFL for 19 games due to his third failed drug test in 2010, he is a playmaker with 10 interceptions and five forced fumbles on his NFL resume`.
“It’s okay, man. Like I told everybody, it happens to everyone,” Jackson said. “Rarely do we see guys play their whole career with the same team. I feel like I will be ready this year, but to them I guessed they wanted to go in a different direction. It is all good.”– Scott Reynolds contributed to this story
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