The free-agent market had been mockingly silent for a future Hall of Famer like Charles Woodson, who had returned to Oakland as a silver and black-clad prodigal son, of sorts, following seven seasons in Green Bay. And at 36 years of age on Kickoff Weekend, there were more than a few whispers that C-Wood had lost a step … or two.
But in his first home game as a Raider since 2005, Woodson found another gear against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Midway through the second quarter, and with the Raiders leading 7-0, the Jaguars threatened to tie the score as they were facing a second-and-goal situation from the Oakland 7-yard line.
With Jacksonville in the shotgun, Maurice Jones-Drew took the ball from Chad Henne and followed an escort down the left sideline. He appeared to have an open lane to the end zone when Woodson literally went horizontal as he came flying over the wall that is Jaguars left tackle Eugene Monroe.
Woodson corralled the diminutive Jones-Drew around the neck, just avoiding a horsecollar penalty, and took him down awkwardly at the 4-yard line. Woodson celebrated his Superman tackle like an excitable rookie, high-stepping down the sidelines. Raiders middle linebacker Nick Roach, meanwhile, came down on Jones-Drew’s right ankle and Jones-Drew was lost for the game.
The Jaguars had to settle for a field goal and the Raiders pulled out the 19-9 victory in Woodson’s first game in Oakland since Oct. 23, 2005, as he racked up a Raiders-high six tackles.
Woodson is again a free agent and has made his intentions clear that he wants to return to Oakland in 2014. General manager Reggie McKenzie is also open to the idea. Stay tuned.