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Thursday, November 28, 2013
Coach's report sold Bucs on Banks

By Pat Yasinskas

TAMPA, Fla. -- When rookie Johnthan Banks did an admirable job covering Detroit receiver Calvin Johnson on Sunday, coach Greg Schiano wasn’t surprised.

Banks
In fact, Banks’ performance backed up a scouting report by his college coach.

“That’s the guy we drafted,’’ Schiano said. “When we spoke to [Mississippi State coach] Dan Mullen before the draft, he said, 'This is my guy. He is a football player. He may not be the fastest guy on the clock. This guy will step up. He’s a two-time captain and he’s just a leader.' Sure enough, he is. That’s what we drafted and he’s living up to that. As he gets more experience, I think he’s going to get better and better.’’

Banks slid to the second round of the draft, in part because some teams doubted his speed. But the Bucs were willing to give him one of the toughest matchups a cornerback can have after Darrelle Revis had to leave the game with a groin injury.

Banks’ sudden success is a reminder that a guy’s time in the 40-yard dash might not tell the whole story. The scouting process should involve talking to those who know a player best. In the case of Banks, the Bucs did their homework and it’s paying off.