Coach confident in cornerbacks

Harris, Woodson still in plans for this season and beyond, McCarthy says

At the ages of 33 and 31, respectively, Al Harris and Charles Woodson have graduated to the small club of graybeards on the Packers' youthful roster following the retirement of their two oldest players -- long snapper Rob Davis, 39, and quarterback Brett Favre, 38.

As much as they're getting long in the tooth and were hampered by physical ailments last season, head coach Mike McCarthy is committed to his Pro Bowl cornerbacks.

"Al Harris has a lot of football left in him," McCarthy said earlier this month at the league owners meetings in Palm Beach, Fla. "He went to the Pro Bowl (this year for the first time) for a reason. I'm glad he's on our team."

Harris' reputation as perhaps the best lockdown corner in the league was diminished by spotty play late in the season. He had an abysmal showing against receiver Plaxico Burress in Green Bay's overtime loss to the New York Giants in the NFC Championship. Burress exploited Harris for 11 catches for 154 yards.

"You've got to look at the plays because there were a lot of positive plays (by Harris) in that game, too," McCarthy said.

Woodson will be looking to bounce back next season for a different reason. He has been injury prone since signing with the Packers as a free agent in 2006. He was far from 100 percent down the stretch last season, as he soldiered on to play with a sprained toe and a sore knee.

McCarthy said Woodson didn't need surgery on the knee, but the veteran has spent time in Green Bay the early part of the offseason to do rehab work.

"Charles is doing great," McCarthy said. "Physically, I know he's doing very well. (Team doctor Pat) McKenzie says he's totally recovered from his injuries and said he looks great."

Woodson's frequent appearances at the team's Lambeau Field headquarters is out of character. He has skipped voluntary workouts in the past, preferring to train on his own in Houston.

McCarthy hinted that Woodson would be a no-show for the team's non-mandatory organized team activities later this spring.

"It's something he's done for a long time, and I'm fine with that," McCarthy said.

The uncertainty of either Woodson or Harris -- or both -- holding up for another season in their starting roles and having inexperienced players behind them makes it seem likely that the Packers will target a cornerback in the early rounds of the draft.

Packer Report Top Stories