SANTA CLARA — Dashon Goldson dropped by San Francisco team headquarters a few weeks back and nobody thought it too strange, even now that he plays for the Buccaneers and his former 49ers travel to Tampa Bay this weekend.
The veteran safety was serving a one-game suspension at the time and in the Bay Area to see his doctor and chiropractor for a body tuneup before returning to the field following the Week 12 penalty for a helmet-to-helmet hit.
"I've never seen that before, a player stopping by like that. But, it was cool, it was natural," coach Jim Harbaugh said Wednesday. "People were glad to see him and he was glad to see guys. Had a chance to see him, give him a hug and talk for a little bit. So, it wasn't a big deal."
Despite his fresh start and new big-money contract, Goldson still has plenty of close connections with the 49ers.
"Being there, I understand their personnel and who I'm dealing with here on Sunday," Goldson said.
He has gone from winning on a one-year deal with San Francisco to that multiyear commitment he long coveted, across the country with the losing Buccaneers.
A tough tradeoff at times, indeed. Yet the veteran safety believes the Bucs can build their young team into a contender much the way the 49ers have recently, capped by last season's return to the Super Bowl for the first time in 18 years.
When the 49ers (9-4) take the field in Tampa on Sunday, they will see that familiar face and hard-hitting defender in the Bucs secondary. Goldson is determined to do his best to disrupt Colin Kaepernick, Vernon Davis, Anquan Boldin and Michael Crabtree in the passing game.
"Of course, I look forward to every Sunday. I'm not looking at it like that," he said. "I'm sure my emotions will be flying come Sunday. Right now I'm just trying to get the game plan down and focus on what I have to do."