Friday, February 15, 2013
Does Charles Woodson fit in AFC West?
By Bill Williamson
The Green Bay Packers have officially released longtime star defensive back Charles Woodson.
Woodson is 36 and has been dealing with injuries. But the future Hall of Famer is expected to draw interest because he is still considered a solid player. Let's look to see if Woodson, who spent his first eight pro years with the Raiders, could fit in the AFC West:
Denver: Woodson will likely want to remain with a contending team and Denver could use some help at safety. So, there is reason to think this match could work. But teams must be careful about getting too much age on the field defensively. Cornerback Champ Bailey will be 35 in June. On one hand, having two future Hall of Famers who can still play in the same secondary has to be tempting. But having two players with the combined age of 71 in the same secondary has to be a bit alarming, too. But if Denver is convinced Woodson can help win a Super Bowl in 2014, it's worth the risk.
Kansas City: There is a connection here. New Kansas City general manager John Dorsey came from Green Bay. Finding ways to get the young Eric Berry and Woodson on the field together would be intriguing. But Kendrick Lewis is a nice player, and I’m not sure Woodson is the missing link in Kansas City. If it happened, it’d be fine. But I don’t see this as a great fit.
Oakland: A lot of Oakland fans want this reunion to occur. Yes, Woodson could help Oakland at safety (it could keep Michael Huff at cornerback) and he knows Oakland general manager Reggie McKenzie from their Green Bay days. It would have to come with Woodson wanting to return to Oakland instead of a team that is ready to contend now and likely at a price less than he would get elsewhere. The question would be does he want to?
San Diego: The Chargers have long been looking for the perfect partner for standout free safety Eric Weddle. A healthy Wooodson and Weddle would, no doubt, be a top-notch pair of safeties. Woodson would also solidify a nice defense. But are the Chargers enough of a contender for Woodson? Would they pay for Woodson with more pressing needs on offense?