Green Bay Packers: The top 5 moves made by GM Ted Thompson
By Matt George
Charles Woodson. Raymond T. Rivard photograph
Signing Charles Woodson in free agency
As noted previously, Thompson is not the kind of manager who relies heavily on free agency. But if you look at any of the free agents Thompson brought in throughout his career with the Packers, and there aren’t many, there was none bigger than the signing of Charles Woodson.
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Woodson was considered by many teams as an afterthought. He was labeled as too old and a cancer in the locker room.
In 2006, Woodson didn’t want to come to Green Bay, but unfortunately for him, the Packers were the only team to offer him a contract.
And Packers Nation should be glad they did.
In his first season with the Packers, Woodson showed he was still one of the game’s best, finishing with the most interceptions in his career with eight. He was named to his first Pro Bowl with the team during the 2008 season and named NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2009. Not only did Woodson not lose a step, but it seemed as if he was only getting better with age.
By 2010, Woodson was the face of the Packers’ defense. Through his leadership and guidance, the Packers made it to the Super Bowl and defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers. In the locker room following the victory over the Chicago Bears in the NFC Championship, Woodson gave one of the most heartfelt speeches in franchise history. He stressed to his team that they must play as “one team for one more game.”
President Barack Obama at the time stated he would go to the Super Bowl if his favorite team, the Chicago Bears, played in the game. Of course, the Packers won, which led to Woodson sending a jersey to the President that said “see you at the White House.”
Obama learned a valuable lesson that most quarterbacks learned when facing the future Hall of Fame corner – you don’t mess with Charles Woodson.
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