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Last year's Players champ isn't in the field this year. You may have heard of him: Tiger Woods.
As always, when Tiger Woods isn't teeing it up in an event he traditionally plays, it's a storyline. Woods continues to recover from back surgery.
As he wrote on his blog earlier this week: "It's Monday of THE PLAYERS, and I'd rather be driving north on I-95 to Ponte Vedra, but unfortunately, I won't be playing this week."
Indeed, Woods won't be playing for months, it seems, as he hasn't been cleared to do anything more than chip and putt around the practice facility at his Jupiter Island palace.
As Woods wrote, "I've said several times, I hope to be back sometime this summer, but I just don't know when."
Uncertainty as to Woods' return date is nearly as bothersome for TW's fans, the Tour and sponsors as an understanding that the golfer will miss the remainder of the season would be. The specter of and speculation about Woods' return will continue to loom until something firm has been declared.
Like it or not, Woods' situation is a storyline this week and will continue to be until he announces a return date (at which point fevered anticipation and countdowns will abound).