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Charles Woodson weighs in on Wisconsin protests

Charles Woodson

Green Bay Packers’ Charles Woodson talks with the media, Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011, in Irving, Texas. Green Bay will face the Pittsburgh Steelers in the NFL football Super Bowl XLV Sunday. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)


Ordinarily we at PFT avoid stories like the news of the day in Wisconsin, where union members are engaged in massive protests against the governor’s plan to end collective bargaining for state workers. But while we steer clear of the particulars of the issue, we’ll note the involvement of some Packers players in the matter.

Most notably, as Mike Freeman of CBS points out, Packers cornerback Charles Woodson has placed himself squarely in the corner of the protesters.

“It is an honor for me to play for the Super Bowl Champion Green Bay Packers and be a part of the Green Bay and Wisconsin communities,” Woodson said. “I am also honored as a member of the NFL Players Association to stand together with working families of Wisconsin and organized labor in their fight against this attempt to hurt them by targeting unions.”

Members of the NFL Players Association don’t have a whole lot in common with the members of public employees’ unions, but at a time when the owners are preparing to lock the players out, it’s not surprising that the players’ union wants to position itself as showing solidarity with other unions in their communities and around the country. It was the NFL Players Association that released the statement from Woodson, and we’ll surely hear a lot more pro-union sentiment coming from NFL players if the expected lockout drags on.

In another story that comes from the intersection of the NFL and the Wisconsin protests, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn called off his trip to Wisconsin, where he was supposed to pay off his NFC Championship Game bet with Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker.

“In light of the very serious issues that the state of Wisconsin is trying to work through right now,” Quinn’s office said in a statement, “the governor felt the timing was not necessarily ideal and that it would be more appropriate to find a better date.”