Gruden: Brad Johnson deserves respect

December, 7, 2012
12/07/12
10:57
AM ET
There has been a lot of reflection this week as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers get ready to celebrate the 10th anniversary of their Super Bowl victory.

Many of the players and coaches will be back in town to be honored as the Bucs host the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday. Much of the hype about the event has focused on guys like Ronde Barber, Warren Sapp, John Lynch, Keyshawn Johnson, Mike Alstott and Jon Gruden, who coached that team.

Speaking of Gruden, click this link and then play the video of him talking about the championship season. The first thing Gruden talks about is how he thinks quarterback Brad Johnson didn’t get the respect he deserved.

That’s an excellent point. Johnson is kind of the forgotten man of that team. That’s understandable because he was surrounded by some big-time names and much of the focus was on the defense. But Johnson quietly had a nice season and gave the Bucs the kind of quarterback play that predecessors Shaun King and Trent Dilfer didn’t.

Johnson led the NFC with a 92.9 passer rating while completing 62.3 percent of his passes. He also set what was then a team record with 22 touchdown passes and, at one point, threw 187 consecutive passes without an interception.

It’s hard for a quarterback to get overshadowed, but that’s exactly what happened to Johnson. As the Bucs celebrate their big weekend, let’s think about what Johnson did that year and give him the respect he earned.

Pat Yasinskas | email

ESPN Tampa Bay Buccaneers reporter

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