Charles Woodson signs with Raiders

Jeff Hanisch-US PRESSWIRE

Charles Woodson won't be returning to the state of Michigan to continue his NFL career. Instead, he's headed back to California.

For those of you who were hoping to see Charles Woodson play for the Detroit Lions, I have bad news. The former Michigan Wolverine is returning to the Oakland Raiders on a one-year contract. He visited the Raiders on Tuesday, and he didn't leave town without a deal in place.

The Lions were never actually interested in signing Woodson, but he said last week that he would be open to the idea of returning to the state of Michigan to continue his career. That was contingent on a deal not getting done with Oakland, though, so it never got to the point where it was a realistic option for either side.

According to Josina Anderson, Woodson's deal has a base salary of $1.8 million and is worth a maximum of $4.3 million. That's likely way, way more than the Lions would have been willing to offer given that they are pretty much set at safety right now. At the veteran's minimum, Woodson would have been a solid addition as a leader and a mentor for the younger defensive backs. At $1.8 million, though? That's a bit much.

Of course, money isn't the only reason Woodson decided to sign with the Raiders. He clearly liked the idea of returning to his original team to wind down his NFL career. And Raiders fans did an excellent job of showing him the love while he was in town for his visit.

If any high-profile free agents visit the Lions next year, perhaps we should organize a rally at their facility in Allen Park.

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