How Can Oakland Raiders Address Issues at Safety?

When Oakland Raiders safety Charles Woodson retires, he’ll find a place in Canton, Ohio, as a Hall of Famer. The eight-time Pro Bowler has nothing more to prove to any of us in terms of his greatness, sacrifice and love for the game. It’s time for him to step aside and allow able bodies to contribute in the Raiders’ porous secondary.

This doesn’t suggest pushing Woodson aside because he’s 38 years old. When healthy, the 18-year veteran plays at a high level. In 2014, he led the Raiders in tackles with 111 in total. That’s when he’s healthy.

In the fourth quarter of a blowout loss to the Cincinnati Bengals, Woodson dislocated his shoulder. Nonetheless, the warrior in him didn’t allow any time for healing or a missed snap.

According to San Francisco Chronicle writer Vic Tafur, Woodson knew immediately that he’d play a week after the painful injury.

“The name of the game is availability,” he said to Tafur. “Once they put my shoulder back in place (last) Sunday I never intended on missing the game. My mind was made up pretty quickly.”

Woodson’s toughness, though admirable, has its faults when it comes to basic fundamentals on the field.


Film Study Example No. 1

In the first film study example, Woodson attempts to tackle Baltimore Ravens tight end Crockett Gillmore on a reception deep in the Raiders secondary. Unfortunately, that injured shoulder hinders Woodson’s ability to wrap up a tackle, and he simply launches his body at Gillmore to no avail.

The tight end easily shook off the safety’s feeble attempt at a tackle and carried the ball another 10 yards down the field before coming in contact with another defender.


Film Study Example No. 2

In the second example, Woodson reacts quic...

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