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Tanard Jackson earns contract extension from Tampa Bay Buccaneers: under contract through 2012

According to ESPN's Pat Yasinskas the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have given Tanard Jackson a contract extension for one year, keeping him under contract through the 2012 season. Tanard Jackson was playing in the last year of his rookie contract. His new deal raises his pay to $1 million this year, and he will earn $2 million in 2012 and can earn a $200,000 roster bonus and $50,000 for every game for which he is on the roster in 2012. 

No one can argue that Tanard Jackson shouldn't be paid based on his on-field performance. The much-criticized safety has played a limited number of snaps in two games this season and has still notched two interceptions. He brings some speed and playmaking ability to a secondary sorely lacking in that department.

But it's the off-field issues that must concern the front office, and that make this extension risky. Tanard Jackson has missed a total of 23 games in his career because of drug-related suspensions. Reportedly his drug of choice has been marijuana. While I don't really care what he chooses to put in his body on his own time, the fact that he has been caught three times has led to him being off the field too often to be very valuable. 

Jackson has reportedly undergone treatment this offseason as a condition for being allowed to play in the NFL again. Because of that the Bucs claimed they had a lot of confidence in Tanard Jackson when he returned to the team three weeks ago. And now they've confirmed that trust with a contract extension.