It was déjà vu for the San Diego Chargers as Head Coach Mike McCoy had to announce at his weekly Monday press conference that one of the team's top weapons was lost for the season with a knee injury.
Last week it was Keenan Allen. This time, it was Danny Woodhead.
Number 39 took a hard hit late in the first quarter and went down awkwardly in the victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars. After being helped to the sideline, he was eventually carted into the locker room.
Similar to Allen, McCoy explained how it is impossible for the Chargers to replace Woodhead on and off the field.
"When you talk about the production part of it, I am going to make a very similar comment (to what) I made about Keenan," McCoy said. "There is not another Danny Woodhead out there. With what he does in all aspects of the game, not only on the field, but also off the field (with) the type of person he is, this is another tough (loss). He does everything the way you want it to be done, and he's an even better person. It's a shame that this happened, but I will promise you one thing. Danny will be back stronger than ever. And that is why he has been so successful in this business. He always has that chip on his shoulder, comes to work every day and treats it like his last day. He is a great example of what it means to be a pro."
"Nobody is going to be able to replace that guy to be honest with you," added Orlando Franklin. "Danny is a pretty special player when it comes to being on the field whether it is first, second or third down. Just his understanding of blitz pickup alone is (rare to find). This is one that hurts. He'll be missed, but we have a lot of football left. Somebody is going to have to fill that role because we can't afford to miss a beat."
Like Franklin said, the Bolts must regroup and march on without one of their leaders. Just like Travis Benjamin and Tyrell Williams stepped up Sunday vs. the Jaguars without Allen, someone now must fill Woodhead's shoes. San Diego currently has three tailbacks on the roster in Melvin Gordon, undrafted free agent Kenneth Farrow and Andre Williams, who was acquired two weeks ago off waivers.
As an undrafted free agent who defied the odds to make the NFL, Farrow shares a great deal of similarities with Woodhead. In recent months, he's taken to staying in the veteran's hip pocket, acting like a sponge to absorb as many tips as possible. Farrow said it's impossible to overstate how much what Woodhead has meant to him.
"Danny has been huge for me. I've been coming in early in the mornings with him for a while. They always say grab a vet and follow his lead. Well, I followed Danny. He took me under his wing and has been awesome to me. He's helped me get a feel for his routine, and what he goes through over the week to prepare for the game. I promised him I'd keep that up. He's helped me tremendously, and I look to contribute as much as I can."
Andre Williams has a similar story. After being claimed off waivers two weeks ago, Woodhead was the one who made him feel at home by immediately inviting him his over house for a barbeque.
"Danny is a vet. He is very knowledgeable about the game, and he's willing to share all his tricks and techniques. He became a great friend quickly. On my first day here after practice he pulled me aside and said, 'Andre, everybody is coming over my crib to grill out and chill out.' I went over there and had a good time. I got to spend time with the guys and that was important. I do appreciate Danny and I'm praying for him."