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    • michael89156

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      Bucs rookie Robert Herron owes debt to Dashon Goldson Matt Baker, Times Staff Writer? ?May 18, 2014  8:00pmherron_zps44cc56df.jpgRobert Herron goes through a drill with WR's coach Andrew Hayes-StokerDaniel Wallace    Times  TAMPA — It wasn't long after the Bucs drafted receiver Robert Herron when the sixth-round pick shot a text message to past acquaintance and new teammate Dashon Goldson. "You've got cleats coming your way ASAP," Herron said. Herron has a 4-year-old promise to keep. Growing up in gang-ridden south central Los Angeles, Herron didn't have much. His dad was in jail. Herron played pee wee flag football because his mom couldn't afford tackle leagues. He never had to sleep on the streets, but he didn't always have his own home. Soon after he got to high school, his mom couldn't care for him anymore. Herron connected with a cousin through MySpace and showed up at the door of a pseudo-aunt he had never really met. He had nothing but a backpack of clothes and pair of shoes. "That was it," said his aunt, Kathy Hales. Hales threw Herron into sports to keep him out of trouble. In the first track meet he ever ran, Herron blazed through 100 meters in 10.6 seconds. He started getting serious about football in the summers, when he'd call or text one of his high school coaches, Ivan Stephenson, to ask for a ride to the gym or an 8 a.m. workout. "I just wanted to see the kid have a chance," said Stephenson, who now serves as Herron's manager. Stephenson used his connections to take his pupil to train alongside pro athletes to make his NFL dreams more tangible. And that's where Herron first met Goldson. The fellow Los Angeles native had just finished his rookie season with the 49ers and was doing offseason conditioning when he saw a teenager working out. The kid was small but fast, and Goldson remembers his drive. "I just knew he was out there training for a purpose," Goldson said. Then Goldson glanced down at Herron's feet. "He's trying to chase his dream," Goldson said, "and he's doing it in tennis shoes." And that wasn't acceptable. NFL dreams require NFL equipment. Goldson went to his car and came back with a new pair of black and white Nikes. Goldson gave the cleats to Herron, who thanked him with a promise: When I make it big, I'll return the favor. Herron didn't need the shoes for long. When he arrived at Wyoming a few months later, the Cowboys gave him a new pair. The ones Goldson gave him have been torn up and lost. But the shoes helped carry Herron down his road to the NFL. The drills he ran in Goldson's cleats in the summer of 2010 prepared him to make an impact as a freshman receiver and running back at Wyoming despite an academic issue that kept him from joining the team until fall camp. His versatility and 303 all-purpose yards in that one season under then-offensive coordinator Marcus Arroyo must have left a strong impression. Arroyo, now the Bucs' quarterbacks coach, helped encourage Tampa Bay to draft Herron with its final pick. Herron has a chance to make an impact as a rookie as a slot receiver or punt returner. He spent time doing both over the weekend at the Bucs' three-day rookie camp. He has already chatted with Goldson in their locker room, and the All-Pro safety gave the rookie some advice: Don't get too emotional, and keep doing the things that got you here. "It's crazy that we're on the same team right now," Herron said. "From looking up to somebody, now you're playing with him." And now that they're peers, Herron knows exactly what he has to give to make good on a 4-year-old promise. A pair of black and white Nikes. Times staff writer Matt Baker can be reached at mbaker@tampabay.com or on Twitter at @MBakerTBTimes.

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    • Anonymous

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      Cool story. 

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    • Anonymous

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      Post count: 9891

      Great story

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    • gobucs123

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      Post count: 569

      The kid will be a keeper.

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    • Anonymous

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      Kids going to be a steal. I have no idea how herron was available in the 6th round in mist guides he was a 3rd 4th rounder at the least.

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    • Anonymous

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      I hope he doesn’t go all Warren here and start stockpiling sneakers.  Nice story though.

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    • Anonymous

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      Post count: 178

      I really hope this kid makes it. Love the speed and hand. Sounds like he will get good advise from an old friend .

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    • Anonymous

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      It was a nice story, and it’s good to hear something good about Goldson. Wish Herron all the best – and Goldson, please keep your head down UP this year! :)

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    • Anonymous

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      Post count: 894

      A lot of respect for Goldson. I also think Herron will produce for the Bucs

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    • Anonymous

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      Post count: 5572

      Great story. I’m rooting for him.

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    • Anonymous

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      The only reason he fell was because of being a slot only player. I believe Herron will be a star with all the weapons we have.

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    • Anonymous

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      Post count: 642

      We do have the size on the outside and at TE so a speedy/shifty slot guy is going to cause coverage issues.I do think we see VJax at slot with Murphy running downfield at times. You put Evans, Jenkins and VJAX one one side and that's going to dictate single coverage on a guy with 4.4 speed. Not shabby.

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    • Anonymous

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      The only reason he fell was because of being a slot only player. I believe Herron will be a star with all the weapons we have.

      He may have the talent to shine in the NFL, but he will need to stay healthy. Hopefully he can take the pounding.Great story though, hope he sticks. We need the speed.

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    • Anonymous

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      Very kind of Goldson.  Just gives his stuff and money away like there is no tomorrow.  I kid, mostly.Seriously though, very thoughtful of him.Don't know much about Herron, but you guys are making him sound pretty damn good.  Hopefully, he isn't another Sammy Stroughter/Preston Parker/JAG slot player.Good luck kid.

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    • Anonymous

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      Very kind of Goldson.  Just gives his stuff and money away like there is no tomorrow.  I kid, mostly.Seriously though, very thoughtful of him.Don't know much about Herron, but you guys are making him sound pretty damn good.  Hopefully, he isn't another Sammy Stroughter/Preston Parker/JAG slot player.Good luck kid.

      His ticket may be as a returner. They are taking a good look at him there, so maybe they have other plans for Demps. I am not too worried about the slot. Vincent actually played quite a few snaps from the slot last season. But its a whole new offense, it may be no more slot for Vince, we will have to see how it pans out.  I agree though, I hope they find a spot for this young man, its a great story.

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    • gobucs123

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      Post count: 569

      His ticket may be as a returner. They are taking a good look at him there, so maybe they have other plans for Demps.

      It was a rookie camp , Demps wasn't there. Who else were they gonna take a look at besides Herron and Patton ?Demps still very much in the return man conversation. Likely in the lead.

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    • Anonymous

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      His ticket may be as a returner. They are taking a good look at him there, so maybe they have other plans for Demps.

      It was a rookie camp , Demps wasn't there. Who else were they gonna take a look at besides Herron and Patton ?Demps still very much in the return man conversation. Likely in the lead.

      They were looking at Sims as well.Demps will be in the lead when he actually shows up.  Until then I have a lot of question marks around him.  I dont doubt he is in shape, but he isnt in "football shape" and its been how long since he has put on pads and taken a hit?

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    • gobucs123

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      When he actually shows up ? He’s been there all off-season – including the last minicamp.  If he showed up at the rookie camp it would be a rules violation. Lol

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    • Anonymous

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      When he actually shows up ? He's been there all off-season - including the last minicamp.  If he showed up at the rookie camp it would be a rules violation. Lol

      Shows up when there is hitting.  I would love to have Demps make an impact on our team, but until that happens I remain skeptical. 

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    • gobucs123

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      Post count: 569

      Gotcha. I thought you were saying he was off running track again.

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    • Anonymous

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      Post count: 5188

      When he actually shows up ? He's been there all off-season - including the last minicamp.  If he showed up at the rookie camp it would be a rules violation. Lol

      Shows up when there is hitting.  I would love to have Demps make an impact on our team, but until that happens I remain skeptical.

      +1.If I had poo to fling against a wall, and I do(o), I would guess Demps gets hurt early in camp or preseason, and misses the season while stealing more money from the Bucs while he "rehabs" for his return to "football", and decides to retire.

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    • Anonymous

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      His ticket may be as a returner. They are taking a good look at him there, so maybe they have other plans for Demps.

      It was a rookie camp , Demps wasn't there. Who else were they gonna take a look at besides Herron and Patton ?Demps still very much in the return man conversation. Likely in the lead.

      Obviously.  I am saying Demps may not be a lock to be the return guy, that is why they are looking at him at other positions. Sure he is faster than hell, but in the few returns he handled last season, he was exactly Devin Hester. I realize he was a great returner in the college, but that may not transfer to the NFL. It takes more than speed.

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    • gobucs123

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      Post count: 569

      His ticket may be as a returner. They are taking a good look at him there, so maybe they have other plans for Demps.

      It was a rookie camp , Demps wasn't there. Who else were they gonna take a look at besides Herron and Patton ?Demps still very much in the return man conversation. Likely in the lead.

      Obviously.  I am saying Demps may not be a lock to be the return guy, that is why they are looking at him at other positions. Sure he is faster than hell, but in the few returns he handled last season, he was exactly Devin Hester. I realize he was a great returner in the college, but that may not transfer to the NFL. It takes more than speed.

      I think he has everything it takes . Just needs to be in football shape not track shape , and it's look like he is attempting to do that this offseason.

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    • Anonymous

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      His ticket may be as a returner. They are taking a good look at him there, so maybe they have other plans for Demps.

      It was a rookie camp , Demps wasn't there. Who else were they gonna take a look at besides Herron and Patton ?Demps still very much in the return man conversation. Likely in the lead.

      Obviously.  I am saying Demps may not be a lock to be the return guy, that is why they are looking at him at other positions. Sure he is faster than hell, but in the few returns he handled last season, he was exactly Devin Hester. I realize he was a great returner in the college, but that may not transfer to the NFL. It takes more than speed.

      I think he has everything it takes . Just needs to be in football shape not track shape , and it's look like he is attempting to do that this offseason.

      True, but its the football instincts of a great return guy I am questioning.

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    • Anonymous

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      His ticket may be as a returner. They are taking a good look at him there, so maybe they have other plans for Demps.

      i just wonder about these guys that didnt return punts in college.  it isnt easy to learn to catch a punt while 240lb LB are coming to take your head off. 

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