As we've been saying here at IAOFM since February and a couple times more recently, Charles Woodson as a matchup safety for the Broncos is an excellent idea (If you're not sure what we mean by a matchup safety, here is a fine refresher course).
The Broncos' struggles at covering tight ends in recent years, and especially last season, have been well documented.
To that end, Vic Lombardi is reporting that the team is finally going to take a closer look at Woodson:
Got a great scoop today. Broncos continue to make aggressive moves toward a Super Bowl, kicking the tires on Charles Woodson tomorrow.
Woodson expected to visit the Broncos soon, possibly this week.I'm thinking they see Woodson in a dual role safety/corner.
Woodson's agent, Carl Poston, tells ESPN's Josina Anderson that his client is flying into Denver today for a visit that will run through Wednesday. Meanwhile, Ian Rapoport says their meeting is to take place tomorrow, which Adam Schefter confirms.
Poston also says Woodson has one preliminary offer in hand, from the Raiders.
None of this is to suggest the Broncos should have visited with Chuck Wood earlier.
His public wonderment about a lack of NFL interest and recent admission that he's willing to go to a rebuilding team would seem to indicate that the former Heisman winner, seven-time All-Pro, eight-time Pro Bowler, and 2009 DPOY had a price tag far higher than his value as perceived around the league.
Woodson, who will turn 37 in October, has 15 years under his NFL belt - eight with Oakland, and seven with Green Bay, where he drew $11M in compensation last season. He had been due to earn around $10M in each of the 2013 and 2014 seasons prior to his February release by the Packers.
A broken right collarbone limited Woodson to seven regular-season and two playoff games, during which he earned an overall grade of -1.5 from PFF (+3.1 run defense, -2.4 pass rush,+0.6 pass coverage, -2.8 penalty). PFF had him down for two sacks, five QB hurries, 41 tackles, 10 assists, five missed tackles, and 16 stops in those nine games.
As for where Woodson would fit on the roster, he would likely join Rahim Moore and David Bruton as locks to make the 53-man roster. Cutting Mike Adams would save the team $2M in cash and against the cap; Quinton Carter is more likely than Adams to contribute on special teams, while Duke Ihenacho's chances of sticking would be all but gone as a result.
Recent comments by John Elway and Matt Russell had suggested that they see third-rounder Kayvon Webster as a potential matchup safety, but the taller Woodson is a known quantity and perfect for the role.
Five corners are roster locks - Champ Bailey, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Chris Harris, Omar Bolden, and Webster. Tony Carter would be something of a surprise cut, especially given his $715K bargain price tag, but the already crowded secondary would get all that much tighter with Woodson aboard.
Ultimately, I'm not sure where the Broncos would find a roster spot, if they were to carry ten defensive backs, so I'll leave that up to Ted to discuss, if/when Denver signs Woodson.
- Woodson, Freeney, Collie hit open market; let the Broncos speculation begin
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- A post-draft look at the Broncos’ cap situation
- Fat Camp: Undervalued roles - the Matchup Safety
- Banging the table for the Broncos to draft a matchup safety at #28
- Fat Camp: Expanding on the matchup safety idea
Updated 8:23pm ET