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Charles Woodson: "I'm not looking at this as the last year"

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Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

At this point it's pretty much assumed Charles Woodson will be on his farewell tour from the NFL this season. Some NFL players choose to make it official they are playing their final season and get treated as such when they visit cities and teams for the last time. Charles Woodson isn't doing that.

"I think every year you stop and smell the roses once you get past a certain point," said Woodson. "But I'm looking at the team and just going off of how I feel health wise, I'm not looking at this being the last year. But of course I'm going to enjoy every moment of it at the same time because like I said you never know how it's gonna turn out. But I'm looking at what they've done here this off-season, the guys they've brought in, the draft that we had, we're gonna be a good team and if that means playing this year and beyond, of course I'd be open to it."

Despite his assertion that he is not standing by the fork to stick in his career, he acknowledges that essentially his career would continue only if it were with the Raiders. Not only that but it may have ended already had the Raiders not brought him back.

It wasn't an instant thing either. The two sides didn't immediately make a deal this off-season and then it even went into free agency for a week before the Raiders and Woodson made his return official.

"Yeah. You never know from year to year," Woodson continued. "It drug on for longer than I wanted it to in the off-season. I wanted to get something done right away, but of course every team has priorities and I respect what they did in the off-season and the moves that they made prior to me signing again. So, yeah, I was getting a bit nervous sitting at home trying to figure out what's gonna happen because the reality was that if it didn't happen here, that could have been it. So, no doubt about it."

"No, I didn't talk to anybody. My heart was set on coming back here and if that didn't happen I would have had to weigh those options. Whether or not something else could turn up but my heart was set on coming here so if it wasn't here, I don't know."

Woodson will turn 37 this year which is well past when most NFL players call it quits. Then again, he played all 16 games last season at a high level at the age of 36 and few expected him to be able to do that either. I certainly won't put it past him to do it again.