It was pretty much certain that Charles Woodson was going to end up with the number 24 when it was all said and done. It couldn't happen immediately upon Woodson's signing because there were no other numbers for defensive backs available at the time but it was inevitable. He already has a history with the number and he understands the legacy behind the number too. The way he is getting the number on the other hand, now that is a surprise.
Normally the player that already has the number gets compensated in some way for giving it up to the newcomer. Its usually up to the players, but this time it was different. This time the Raiders took #24 away from Tracy Porter and handed it over free of charge to Woodson despite Porter being signed first and already having been assigned the number. Obviously Porter is not happy with the situation, and his tweet afterwards is definitely something worth noticing.
Well you Raiders fans...your guy has 24. It was TAKEN from me and given to him. #congrats.....too funny how this biz "works"— ♌Tracy Porter♌ (@TracyPorter) July 24, 2013
He followed that tweet with this one though:
Not mad at all...it's just the principle and the way it was handled.....said my piece, now back to football.— ♌Tracy Porter♌ (@TracyPorter) July 24, 2013
Can you really blame Porter for not being happy with the way this was handled though? It isn't the way it should've went down for more than a couple of reasons, and the least of it is the compensation he should've had the right to negotiate. Its believable that he isn't mad about this, because the real emotion is probably more appropriately labeled as hurt.
Look at the way he phrased that first tweet to see what I mean. The use of "you Raider fans" and "your guy" are the parts that are important to look at. This distancing from himself to the fanbase is something that the fans should care about and try to fix. Tracy doesn't seem to be feeling the love he deserves as a young talent in his prime who decided to become an Oakland Raider.
Ever since the number thing came into play the fanbase clearly has been predominately against Porter's side of things. Its crucial to make sure Porter feels important to the fans and so far because of the Woodson signing that hasn't happened. Porter is only signed to a one year deal, the fans should remember that they will play a role in whether or not he decides to stay longer.
This move also seems like the organization itself didn't show Porter the respect he deserves. The team made it abundantly clear the pecking order for the secondary as far as Porter and Woodson are concerned, and it definitely does not start with Porter. That's ok, but the way things were handled seems like an unnecessary reminder of their statuses. Porter can get used to his new number being 31(which became available after cutting Coye Francies), but he would not be able to get used to being treated as a second hand citizen by his own team.
To Porter's credit he is moving on publicly from this, as his second tweet about getting back to football was saying. He had a third tweet too that really puts his ability to soften the blow of this situation into light.
On a more serious note: I need food I'm starving— ♌Tracy Porter♌ (@TracyPorter) July 24, 2013
I agree with Porter here, fighting off starvation is definitely much more serious. Besides, he is just biding time until his real number of #22 becomes available. That number is currently held by Taiwan Jones who is attempting to switch from HB to CB so there is a high probability that it will be available before Week 1 of the regular season.