It is dangerous to try and get inside the head of a madman.
It is even more dangerous when the madman in question is the person who is running your favorite football team.
Since the day Ted Thompson was put in charge of running football operations for the Packers, people have tried to get inside the head of Ted to try and figure out what he was going to do. Armchair GMs always knew which players he was going to draft, who he was going to (not) sign in free agency, and who the Packers were going to trade for better than Ted.
And without fail, every one of these assumptions were wrong. Well, almost every one (see Justin Harrell-superbust.)
Well, it happened again this week.
I stumbled across this article, in which the author makes the mistake of trying to get inside the head of Ted as it comes to the future of Charles Woodson. And while the article is well written, I could not help but think that he was making the classic mistake of trying to predict what Ted will do. And that is a dangerous game to play.
We all know how important Woodson has been to the Packers since he signed with them in 2006. He has gone from a top cover corner to a Defensive Player of the Year, ball hawking hybrid. His mere presence on the field is something opposing teams have struggled to deal with for years now.
It is clear that since winning the DPOY in 2009, Woodson's performance on the field has declined. He does not have the speed to keep up with many wide receivers anymore. He does take too many chances when it comes to predicting where a ball will be in an effort to make a game changing play. And his tackling has become much more suspect than it had previously been. But he is still considered by many to be one of the top defenders in the NFL, and that is why assuming he is done in Green Bay after this season is dangerous.
Someone else currently on the Packers roster underwent the exact same treatment this past off season: Donald Driver.
After the 2011 campaign saw Driver drop further and further down the depth chart, many assumed that he would not be back with the Packers this season. Some predicted he would retire, while others (including myself) thought he would be released at the end of training camp, and would continue his career with another team. Yet we were all proven wrong when Driver renegotiated his contract, and made the final roster.
Once again, the game of assuming what Ted Thompson will do was proven to be a fruitless exercise. And the same thing may happen with Woodson this off season.
There are a few factors working against Woodson for 2013. A $9 million salary for starters doesn't help. Being 36 years old does not help either. But as Ted has proven with Driver, what looks to be the smart decision to John Q. Fan may not be the best decision as it comes to the Packers and the mad genius who runs the football operations for them.
Assuming Woodson is gone after this season is pointless. It makes an ass out of you and me. Instead, I'll sit back and recite that old mantra as far as the decisions Ted makes for the Packers goes:
In Ted We Trust.
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