Notebook: Woodson's Alert Recovery Averts Disaster

Charles Woodson is known as a smart, heady player, and his instincts may have avoided a potentially disastrous turnover late in the fourth quarter on Sunday. - More Audio | Video | Packers-Redskins Game Center


Charles Woodson is known as a smart, heady player, and his instincts may have avoided a potentially disastrous turnover late in the fourth quarter on Sunday.

With just under three minutes left, the Packers led 17-14 and Washington lined up to punt. Woodson saw Derrick Frost's low kick heading right for Green Bay teammate Jarrett Bush, who was on the outside blocking the Redskins' gunner.

Sure enough, the ball bounced and hit Bush, making it a live ball. But Woodson, anticipating the play, had reacted quickly and pounced on it right away at the Green Bay 42-yard line, preventing a major blunder.

"I tried to warn him, tell him to get out of the way, but the ball hit him right away," Woodson said. "I was right there. Luckily it hit him and it didn't bounce too far."

The Packers were unable to run out the clock, but upon punting it back to the Redskins, they took over on their own 20. Had they recovered the bouncing punt, they would have needed only one first down to be in position for a tying field goal.

Woodson's big day also included his first interception of the 2007 season to go along with the game-winning touchdown on a fumble return. But he said afterwards he enjoyed the type of game it was moreso than being the so-called hero.

"I love it, ... Lambeau Field, raining, kind of cold, they're trying to pound the football," Woodson said. "Those are fun games. Those are the kind of games I grew up playing, being from the Midwest. It felt like home."

Woodson is a native of Fremont, Ohio, and played collegiately at the University of Michigan.

Crosby gets taste of sloppy conditions

It wasn't one of kicker Mason Crosby's better days.

The rookie out of Colorado had a chance to see just how difficult and unpredictable the conditions can be inside Lambeau Field on a dreary, drizzly day.

At the end of the first half, Crosby lined up at the Redskins' 28 to attempt a 46-yard field goal, which if it had been good would have allowed the Packers to enter halftime down 14-10. However, the kick sailed a little to the left, even though distance wasn't a factor.

The young kicker, who already has one game-winner earlier this season admitted that sometimes you just miss, even when everything seems to go smoothly.

"I felt like I hit it well," Crosby said. "It just drifted on me."

Crosby also missed a 38-yard field goal in the fourth quarter, which hit the upright and bounced away, something he didn't expect when the ball came off his foot.

To Crosby's credit, his confidence didn't appear shaken in the locker room after the game. He's just happy his misses didn't cost the team more dearly.

"It's great being part of a team where I kind of had an off day and everyone can back me up and get the win," Crosby said. "That's a positive, but it's not something that I plan on happening again. I've got to go out there and do my job. I have two weeks to get back on track and get ready."

A timely manner

With the Packers clinging to a three-point lead and facing a fourth down at their own 45-yard line with 1:22 left on the game clock, surely they wanted as much time run off the clock as possible.

Much to the surprise of many, punter Jon Ryan took the snap with about 15 seconds left on the play clock instead of letting it run down as far it could.

The punt seemed to catch the Redskins by surprise, and it wasn't going to be returnable anyway as it sailed into the end zone for a touchback. But it wasn't the Packers' plan to snap the ball so early.

"That's poor time management," Head Coach Mike McCarthy said. "That's my responsibility. I was in a conversation on the third-down call. That's no excuse. That can't happen. That was clearly a mistake on my part."

Ironically enough, however, the Redskins gave that time back, and more. Taking over with 1:13 left on their own 20, they lost 20 seconds on the drive due to two 10-seconds runoffs for an injury and a penalty.

In the first instance, tackle Stephon Heyer was injured, and in the second case, guard Pete Kendall was charged with a false start. After that, the Redskins had only 25 seconds left, facing third-and-long on their own 13-yard line.

{sportsad300}Another record broken

With his two interceptions on Sunday, quarterback Brett Favre broke George Blanda's NFL record for career interceptions, which stood at 277. Favre now has 279.

The record-breaker came on the Packers' first drive of the third quarter, when Favre ran play-action, rolled to his left and saw James Jones running wide open down the left sideline. But it appeared to take Favre a little too long to release the throw, allowing safety Sean Taylor to get over and outjump Jones for the ball.

"I could care less, we won the game," Favre said about the record. "I'm glad it's over, just like the other records. We're 5-1. It feels a heck of a lot better than having no picks and being 1-5."

Packers to enjoy a good bye

The Packers have played six games and despite various injuries to a few key players, they have been relatively healthy in the first part of their schedule.

Fortunately for them, it appears it remained that way after Sunday's game as well.

McCarthy listed four players that missed time in the game due to injury, but only Bubba Franks didn't return. The tight end left the game in the fourth quarter with a knee injury and McCarthy said after the game that he wasn't sure of its severity.

Vernand Morency (ribs), DeShawn Wynn (hand), and Cullen Jenkins (knee) all returned to finish the game, although Jenkins admitted he initially received a scare near the end of the first half when his leg was trapped between two Washington linemen.

"I still am in a lot of pain," said Jenkins, who was taken to the locker room right away for X-rays. "I thought everything was torn in my leg when I got hurt. Obviously the doctors checked it and it's nothing serious. It's just a matter of dealing with the pain."

McCarthy acknowledged that it's not a bad time to be entering the bye for the Packers.

"I always look at byes from a medical standpoint," he said. "I think byes are a good time to get healthy.

"We're a particularly healthy team if you look at us opposed to everyone else around the league. I think it's a good opportunity to have a bye whenever it comes because there's always certain aspects of your football team that you'd like to clean up and improve. And I think this is a good time for our football players to get away and to get rested."

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