Novel idea: Woodson on Rice?


Sorry – just had another cup of coffee (“Andy never has a later evening cup of coffee at home”) and I wasn’t sure where to go with the numerous thoughts floating around in my head. So, I came here.

For the last few weeks, Charles Woodson has thrived marking the opponents’ most dangerous offensive weapons. Starting with Witten, then Vernon Davis (until Capers took Woodson off of him), then Calvin Johnson, Woodson not only shut these studs down, but he also managed to make a bunch of other plays that helped the team out at the same time. So, it made me think: would Capers consider having Woodson mark Balt’s most dangerous weapon in Ray Rice? Doing something like this would be pretty much unprecedented and the idea may in fact seem downright ridiculous. And, I know there are logistical issues with a CB guarding a RB closely. But the fact is, right now, I’m not sure any assignment given to Woodson could be considered “ridiculous” considering how dominant he’s been on defense. I’m not sure there is anything Charles Woodson can’t do well. And, the fact is that Ray Rice is not only a great rusher, but he’s #9 in receptions in the NFL. We could play a sort of 4-4-3 line-up with Woodson operating almost like a MLB marking Rice and Barnett dropping into coverage a lot (or we could use a 3-4-4 bringing in an extra CB allowing Woodson to cheat up to stay on Rice).

(I suppose the other far less exciting and far too sensible approach would be to have Woodson mark WR Derrick Mason closely to shut down Balt’s passing game which would allow us to put 8-9 in the box to stop Rice. That would be OK too, but not as creative and not nearly as cool.)

13 Responses to “Novel idea: Woodson on Rice?”

  1. Packers Daily Links 12.4.09 - Railbird Central Says:

    […] Andy Hayes of packergeeks floats around the idea of having Charles Woodson mirror Baltimore's dangerous Ray Rice on defense. "I’m not sure any assignment given to Woodson could be considered 'ridiculous' considering how dominant he’s been on defense," writes Hayes. […]

  2. 56Coop Says:

    Well, my bet is the Pack will end up going with the latter approach. Capers has got the defense playing well but novel, cool?? Probably not. It is a good idea though. Have to keep an eye out and see if Capers really does read Packer Geeks.

    As long as they end up with a W I don’t really care how they get there.

    Another observation I had while typing this — the manufacturers of QWERTY keyboards need to reverse the : ; key and the ” ‘ key. I find that I use the comma/ quote key much more than the semi colon and whatever this is ; (the wink key I guess) and I’m getting tired of having to go back and replace all the ; that are typed in my contractions with the proper ‘. Either that or I should train my little finger to reach just a little further

  3. 56Coop Says:

    Now why in the hell does the ‘ in my previous post slant to the right when on my keyboard it slants to the left. Crap, the one in this post almost looks straight up and down. Something has possessed my keyboard. I gotta go get my glasses—and some coffee. Or maybe a beer.

  4. 56Coop Says:

    OH NO–it slanted right again.

  5. PackerMax Says:

    I think having Woodson on Rice would be a better adjustment (say at halftime) rather than planning on that coverage to start the game. However, that would require someone to make an in-game adjustment, which is something the coaching staff has not been doing very well this year. Let’s see how the defense holds their own and keep Woodson free to do what he does best – make plays.

  6. Trav Says:

    Nothing better than to start the day with an Abrahams/Zucker quote. Nice work Andy!

  7. DaveK Says:

    I think the key to the game will be field position. Make the Ravens go 70-80 yards for points. That gives Capers more flex with Woodson and Flacco will make a few mistakes. If the Packers give them short fields per turnovers or shoddy ST’s play then it may be tough for the offense to score enough to win. Ravens have a quick shifty kick returner and their defense is a bunch of ball hawks. Big challenge this week for ST’s and ball security for the offense.

    But, that is an interesting thought on how to use Woodson this week. Rice is Flacco’s default WR on most plays and if you take away that swing pass or dump pass if might really force Flacco into some poor throws especially if he has to sustain long drives. Another option may be to run blitz and force Rice to stay in to pass protect. But, take away that outlet for Flacco and he’ll make some mistakes. The Ravens WR group is hardly great so maybe Capers trusts Bush on Mark Clayton and the LB’s on a less then 100% Todd Heap.

    The Raven’s also use their version of the u-71 quite a bit so it will be interesting to see how the defense responds to some power running formations. Big Okie might be a good defense against this as it puts 5 LB’s on the field. I guess it depends if Chillar is back or not and if you really want to take Bigby off the field. It may be better to stay in base and put Bigby down in the box???

    Huge game for the Packers. Win and they are on their way to a playoff spot and have proven they can beat solid teams. Lose and it may show the Packers can only beat below average teams and they will have to win 3 out 4 to make the playoffs with three of those games on the road. Season defining game.

  8. Ron LC Says:

    Dave K, you are right about the field position game. That’s why I’m having nightmares. Slocums’ boys are less than stellar in coverage and kicking performance. Kampinos, Crosby, and Slocum should be worried about their jobs. Maybe that will inspire them.

    It’s about time the Packers establich home field dominance once again.

  9. Ron LC Says:

    A new worry! TJ Lang did not practice today. reason – Consussion. Clifton still not recovered from hamstring. I have visions of LT- Colledge, LG Sitton, C- Wells, RG ED Smith and RT – Tausher. This could really change the outlook of the game significantly.

    The O line must be priority ONE this up coming off-season. TT has never given the O line adequate resources. He thinks you can get any slug from 2nd, 3rd, and 4th level schools at a low price and they can do the job. This attitude is killing them.

  10. 56Coop Says:

    Holy crap Ron. That ain’t good

  11. Andrew54 Says:

    TJ lang is gonna be missed cause i dont think chad has lasted a full game yet? he gets hurt as soon as he comes back into the game nd allen barbre needs to be kept off the field i cant stand him i hope he is removed from the squad after the season free up space for a new lineman that will play more like Lang has been. also i feel we will start seeing the effect of losing kampman this week with thompson going down we are suddenly without a lot of depth bump Hawk back over to olb nd give bishop nd chillar the time? i think its worth a thought Hawk is a solid tackler can basically produce exactly what kampman had been producing for us while he was here nd chillar nd bishop have the big play ability.. just a thought

  12. Trav Says:

    There is an 2 page excerpt from McGinn’s Super Bowl book in the print edition of the Journal Sentinel, detailing Super Bowl XXXII against the Broncos. It’s available online only for Packer Insiders, but it is a great write-up about the schemes used in that game. It’s also tears open the wound of that game and makes me want to puke thinking about it. What a wasted opportunity and really shines a light on the stubborness of the coaching staff.

  13. Ron La Canne Says:

    30-17 NYUCK, NYUCK, NYUCK!

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