'Tuck rule' still a nightmare for Woodson

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'Tuck rule' still a nightmare for Woodson

By Danny Picard
CSNNE.com

FOXBORO -- Everybody has nightmares. Charles Woodson's seem to be recurring.

The 2001-02 AFC Divisional playoff game at a snowy Foxboro Stadium continues to haunt Woodson's dreams.

Now a cornerback for the Green Bay Packers, Woodson was the Oakland Raider who stripped Tom Brady of the ball in the fourth quarter of that playoff game.

But, as we all know, that play -- a fumble recovered by Oakland -- was reviewed and overturned because of the tuck rule. Brady's arm was just barely going forward, which, by the rules, meant it was an incomplete pass and not a fumble.

The Patriots retained the ball, drove down the field, tied the game with a field goal, and then won 16-13 with another field goal in overtime.

The rest is history.

Just ask Woodson, who will be reminded of that game once again if it snows Sunday night at Gillette Stadium.

"You know, I've had that flashback more times than I would like," said Woodson in a conference call on Wednesday. "I catch that game on classic football channels sometimes. That's a bad memory for me. But, you know, it is what it is."

Packers coach Mike McCarthy began his NFL career as a member of the Kansas City Chiefs' offensive coaching staff in 1993 and 1994. Joe Monatana spent the last two seasons of his career as the quarterback for the Chiefs in both of those seasons.

Having to study for Tom Brady this week, in preparation for the Patriots on Sunday night, McCarthy said on Wednesday that he sees glimpses of Montana in the Patriots' quarterback.

"Joe was probably the most fundamental quarterback that I've had an opportunity to be around," said McCarthy. "I would say definitely, Tom is in that category. His fundamentals are outstanding."

Woodson agrees with the comparison as well.

"I think Brady's No. 1, as far as quarterbacks are concerned," said Woodson when asked who was the best quarterback in the league. "I guess there are some similarities. Joe Montana was 'Joe Cool' and Brady's no different. Watching him on film, and watching games when they're on television, the way he drops back, he sits in that pocket as if there's no rush coming.

"There's no panic in his game. And he's a winner, and Joe was a winner as well. That's the greatest comparison between the two."

Danny Picard is on Twitter at http:twitter.comDannyPicard. You can listen to Danny on his streaming radio show I'm Just Sayin' Monday-Friday from 9-10 a.m. on CSNNE.com.

Tom Brady delivers video message at funeral of Navy SEAL

Tom Brady delivers video message at funeral of Navy SEAL


Tom Brady delivered a video message last week at the funeral of Navy SEAL Kyle Milliken, a Maine native and former UConn track athlete killed in Somalia on May 5.

Bill Speros of The Boston Herald, in a column this Memorial Day weekend, wrote about Milliken and Brady's message.   

Milliken ran track at Cheverus High School in Falmouth, Maine, and at UConn, where he graduated in 2001. Milliken lived in Virginia Beach, Va., with his wife, Erin, and two children.  He other Navy SEALs participated in a training exercise at Gillette Stadium in 2011 where he met and posed for pictures with Brady.

Speros wrote that at Milliken’s funeral in Virginia Beach, Va., Brady's video offered condolences and thanked Milliken’s family for its sacrifice and spoke of how Milliken was considered a “glue guy” by UConn track coach Greg Roy.

Milliken had served in Iraq and Afghanistan, earning four Bronze Star Medals and was based in Virginia since 2004.  He was killed in a nighttime firefight with Al-Shabaab militants near Barij, about 40 miles from the Somali capital of Mogadishu. He was 38.

The Pentagon said Milliken was the first American serviceman killed in combat in Somalia since the "Black Hawk Down" battle that killed 18 Americans in 1993. 

In a statement to the Herald, Patriots owner Robert Kraft said: “It was an honor to host Kyle and his team for an exercise at Gillette Stadium in 2011. It gave new meaning to the stadium being known as home of the Patriots. We were deeply saddened to hear of Kyle’s death earlier this month.

“As Memorial Day weekend approaches, we are reminded of the sacrifices made by patriots like Kyle and so many others who have made the ultimate sacrifice to defend and protect our rights as Americans. Our thoughts, prayers and heartfelt appreciation are extended to the Milliken family and the many families who will be remembering lives lost this Memorial Day weekend.”