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Dashon Goldson: I feel targeted

TAMPA, Fla. -- Although he's been suspended for a game and fined on multiple occasions, Buccaneers safety Dashon Goldson is unhappy that many consider him to be a dirty player.

"Definitely," Goldson said in a Wednesday conference call with the San Francisco media when asked for his reaction to the label. "I remember being on the good side of it, hearing commentators, analysts talking about how perfect, how good, how I do it the right way, and all of a sudden with the new rule I'm a dirty player, a nasty player, targeted and I'm not playing the game how it's supposed to be played.

"I think that's ridiculous, and [I'm] being targeted, I feel, because it's been a few times people have been in the situation or worse situations than me and haven't gotten penalized like I've been."

Fans and media may question some of Goldson's hits, but he said he feels he has the respect of players around the league.

"I think the players, they understand the game and how it's supposed to be played," Goldson said. "They're more on my side than anybody else, and coaches on top of that.

"Now with the new rule, you do have some of those guys, as far as coaches, who complain about hits. And they're the same guys I'm sure who are teaching their players how to hit and congratulating them when they make a big hit."

The San Francisco 49ers are preparing to face Goldson for the first time since he left the team for Tampa Bay in the offseason, signing a five-year, $41.25 million contract with the Buccaneers.

But it won't be the first time the team has seen Goldson since he left. The safety was a surprise visitor to the 49ers' facility last month when he was suspended for a game by the NFL for an illegal hit.

Goldson said he stopped by to see former teammates and coaches while he was in the area attending to other matters. 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh said Wednesday that he was surprised by Goldson's visit but was glad he made it.

"I'd never seen that before, a player stop by like that," Harbaugh said. "But it was cool. It was natural. People were glad to see him. He was glad to see guys. I had a chance to see him, give him a hug and talk for a little bit. It wasn't a big deal."

ESPN.com 49ers reporter Bill Williamson contributed to this report.