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Original Issue

Trading E-Mail With ... Bucs quarterback Brad Johnson

SI: Why are you having such a great season?

Johnson: A lot of reasons. Being prepared and being in a great
system. In the final 11 games last season we averaged more than
26 points and really took off as a group. This year we only lost
one starter. I'm making the right reads, making good throws, and
guys are making plays after the catch.

SI: You and Jon Gruden seem to be a good fit.

Johnson: When he puts in a game plan, it's very sound in
protection schemes. He puts me in good situations. I've always
been a completion-percentage player who stayed away from sacks,
who really just works the system. He likes that.

SI: The knock on you, late in your Redskins days, was that you
lacked deep arm strength.

Johnson: It's funny how labels are put on you. I've worked under
Brian Billick, Norv Turner and Jon Gruden, all offensive-minded
guys, and they've had no problems with my play. I'm happy to be
in the top 10 in history in quarterback rating and the top five
or so in completion percentage, and I've led three organizations
to the playoffs and won a Super Bowl. So the proof is in the
pudding. Are you looking for the guy who is running around,
making highlights? Or are you looking for a guy who wins year in
and year out?

SI: Your first thought as the clock wound down and you knew you
were a Super Bowl champion?

Johnson: I've always watched the game at some party, on some
couch, eating chips and dip, and never realized that it might be
me one day. You talk about it. You think about it. You work for
it. But to be that guy saying, "I'm going to Disney World," to
stand there with my wife, Nikki, and my son, Max. For at least
one moment I was the Number 1 quarterback in the world on the
best team in the world. Awesome.