Playing With Passion

Former Florida State Seminole quarterback <b>Brad Johnson</b> is known as the consummate professional and first-class person. Johnson, who quarterbacked the Tampa Bay Bucs to the Super Bowl championship in 2003 and resides in Tallahassee during the offseason, is fending off rumors speculating his future status with the Bucs. Johnson also has released a new book which details his professional career.

Brad Johnson is one of professional football's good guys.

The former Florida State Seminole and Tampa Bay Buccaneer quarterback resides in Tallahassee with wife Nikki and their two children. Johnson attends numerous FSU functions, especially basketball, and also is involved in charity work during the offseason.

When football rolls around, Johnson is all business.

And this year isn't any different.

Just like he did during last year's offseason, Johnson is fending off the rumors speculating his future status with the Bucs.

Dealing with rumors is a subject Johnson addresses in his new book ``Brad Johnson Play With Passion.''

The book, which Johnson unveiled last Saturday at a signing at the Carrollwood Barnes & Noble in Tampa, details his path to the NFL and Super Bowl. Johnson describes several of his failures also.

"There's probably going to be more downs than ups," he said.

At various times this offseason, reports had Mark Brunell and Jeff Garcia unseating Johnson as the Bucs' starting quarterback. Of course, one name that won't go away is Oakland's Rich Gannon, who remains in Silver and Black at the moment.

Since last season, the Bucs have signed former Broncos and Dolphins starter Brian Griese and former Giants third-teamer Jason Garrett. They also have Chris Simms, their 2003 third-round draft pick, and it is becoming increasingly possible he could win the backup job over Griese and Garrett.

The Bucs have said they may take as many as five quarterbacks to training camp.

``You don't get caught up in what everyone else is saying,'' Johnson said. ``You focus in on yourself and you don't let things affect you.''

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