Tre's note: Just the fact that James posted this, tweeted the title and link on twitter, now I've received tweets already to "stop hatin on TheHawk38 the man played hurt all year next year probowl for sure!"
Now let me get one thing out there right away: Tre9er does not really hate Dashon Goldson, and neither do I - but there are times when I read him on Twitter and I want to jump off a cliff. Anyway, if you don't recall Dashon and Tre's Twitter beef, basically Tre criticized Dashon and someone else tweeted it to him and everyone freaked out and Tre became the third antichrist. It was pretty fun. Either way ...
Dashon is set to be a free agency, coming off a down year in which he fell short of everyone's expectations. Unless you expected him to be a middling safety who occasionally played like a top tier guy and occasionally like he deserved the bench. Here are some facts about Goldson's game: he's got decent coverage ability and a solid nose for the ball. He's reliable in run support and plays with a lot of speed and intensity. Athletically, I trust him against any player on the field, but mentally, there are many mistakes.
Everyone makes mistakes in football, it just happens. What bothers me with Goldson is that he's a four-year veteran who still makes them like he's a rookie. He'll go barreling into a guy that doesn't have the ball, or he'll jump for a pick that is nowhere in his vicinity. They're just little things, but they occur with startling consistency.
But the talent is there, and one has to wonder how much better Goldson can look with an improved pass rush or a better corner to help him. As I noted in the Long Look Back, Brief Look Forward post on the position, I did notice Dashon trying to do too much, compensating for the SS position at times. I'd say there's a good chance he's back in a 49ers uniform in 2011.
So to define the poll ... with Goldson, who at one point has been noted as having "huge potential" and others as "no hope," I think a '10' should imply top tier, play-making safety in 2011. '7' is above-average, a good player, like we probably expected him in 2010. '5' implies you're just fine with him, the 49ers probably need him in there, and below that is varying degrees of "no thanks."