In the days leading up to training camp, it wasn't immediately known if Dashon Goldson would sign his one-year franchise tender and report along with all of San Francisco's veterans.
Goldson, however, knew what he was going to do the whole time.
On Thursday, veteran report day for 49ers training camp, the Pro Bowl safety signed his one-year tender and called the decision, "a no-brainer."
Following a season in which the 6-foot-2, 200-pound safety recorded 80 tackles and a career-high six interceptions, Goldson tried to negotiate a long-term deal with the 49ers this offseason, but ultimately elected to sign the one-year tender once the July 16 deadline for a multi-year contract passed.
"It's just one of those things," Goldson said. "It comes with territory. Of course I wanted something long-term, but it ain't all bad. I think I can go out there, play on this, and come back again to the table next year."
More importantly, Goldson is pleased to be reunited with his teammates.
"We have a good football team here," Goldson said. "We have a chance to do something special here and that's my main focus."
The sixth-year veteran drafted by the 49ers in the fourth round of the 2007 NFL Draft said he challenged himself throughout the offseason with trips to various training centers. The training paid off. Goldson said he passed his conditioning test with "flying colors."
"I've been great," Goldson said. "The offseason was real good and I'm very confident in everything that went on. I'm glad to be back here to get this show on the road."
Offseasons, according to Goldson, are one of the best times to be challenged. In his mind, difficult training sessions pay off in the grand scheme of things.
"I always want to add to my game and try new things," Goldson said. "I don't ever just stick to one (thing), a lot of guys have different things to offer. I like the challenge. I like the challenge in the offseason to make my training camps and my season that much easier."
Personally, Goldson wanted to start camp right away to keep building off his breakout season.
"I owed it to my teammates," he added. "Those guys have been working extremely hard. I missed a little bit of the offseason earlier and I didn't want to miss another part of this training camp."
Goldson felt missing camp time would hamper his chance of repeating his 2011 success. The hard-hitting safety said he wanted to "sharpen up."
"I didn't want to come out to a slow start during the season," he added.
Teammates were pleased to see Goldson back, too.
But in order for the 49ers to improve upon last year's 13-3 regular season and trip to the NFC title game, Goldson knows a strong start to the season will be key.
That's exactly why he's in camp from day one.
"We did some good things last year and it's very important for us to start fast and finish faster."
The 49ers will need to start fast in the season opener against reigning league MVP Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers. Goldson is up to the task of facing one of the league's top passing attacks, but isn't blowing it out of proportion either.
"It's always good to play in those high-profile games against those elite athletes," he said. "It's going to be good for our team and our organization to compete with those guys."
Goldson spent time viewing last year's game tape in order to find ways to improve his game. He's confident he'll be able to improve. And he'll do it in camp, by gaining a better understanding of how to recognize formations and being able to understand every player's specific role on defense and where they need to line up.
"You can never know it all in this game," he said.
That being said, Goldson still knows what it's all about, winning.
"The most important thing is being out here and getting the season started."