Thursday, January 03, 2013

Packers vs. Vikings: The Return of Charles Woodson

When QB Aaron Rodgers was asked about the importance of the bye week, his first comment was that it would give more time for CB Charles Woodson and WR Randall Cobb to get healthy. Luckily, it's worked out for both players and they've been cleared to play on Saturday.

My first thought was that I didn't know how they were going to use Woodson. I don't think he'll take playing time away from any of the cornerbacks. He should replace rookie S Jerron McMillian, who's been taking over Woodson's duties as the hybrid defensive back/linebacker that Woodson has been lining up as on passing downs, and replace S M.D. Jennings at starting safety on early downs.

Cobb was injured while returning a punt against the Titans, so maybe it's for the best if Cobb only plays on offense, where they might be without WR Jordy Nelson and WR Jeremy Ross returns kicks/punts. I wasn't expecting much from Ross when the Packers signed him off the practice squad in early December because there's usually something wrong with their undrafted receivers. They're either too slow, too small, or have bad hands, but Ross seems to be the exception. His 40 time was a little slow at 4.45 coming out of college, but Ross can accelerate through an opening like the best of them. And at 215 lbs., arm tackles aren't effective against him.

Fortunately, LB Clay Matthews is only a little stiff after taking one of the more violent non-injury hits I've seen in a while. While he was airborne, he took a shot and his spine was slung like a whip as he fell to the ground. But Matthews said his spine is fine and nothing was injured internally.

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