For Leonard Johnson, playing for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers isn't just a dream come true — it's a homecoming.
Johnson, whose football career began with the Greenwood Panthers as a youth and continued at Largo High before he starred at Iowa State, has cracked the hometown Bucs' initial 53-man roster.
“I am excited just to be back home,” Johnson told JoeBucsFan.com earlier this week. The cornerback, signed as an undrafted free agent this spring, and attended Bucs coach Greg Schiano’s local football camps while in high school.
Now, he may be seeing lots of action for Schiano in the Bucs' secondary, especially with E.J. Biggers and Anthony Gaitor contending with nagging injuries, JoeBucsFan.com reports.
Johnson's feel-good story began . The 22-year-old recently returned to celebrate , built on the site of a former parking lot between the North Greenwood Recreation and Aquatics Complex and the North Greenwood Library so that local kids would have a place to play.
“Now that I’m home,” Johnson told Patch this week, “I’m just doing God’s work.”
And his work on the football field continues this Sunday, when the Bucs open the 2012 season against the Carolina Panthers.