12 Dec, 14:42
Prop Cian Healy is expected to miss the start of the 2014 RBS 6 Nations after undergoing surgery on his injured ankle on Wednesday.
Woodward has told his players they must commit to the three-Test tour of Australia and New Zealand in June if they want to play in this season's Six Nations and the 33-year-old Johnson is reportedly unwilling to make that commitment.
And the head coach has as good as signalled Johnson's departure from the international scene. "It was fantastic but now it's gone. We created a great team, but that team will never play together again," Woodward said.
England open their defence of the championship against Italy in Rome on Feb 15. Woodward was reported to have drawn up a shortlist to replace Johnson as captain that does not include Wilkinson.
They are former skipper and No 8 Lawrence Dallaglio, scrum-half Matt Dawson, blindside flanker Richard Hill and prop Phil Vickery.
Dallaglio, who was Johnson's predecessor as England captain, admitted he would love to regain his position if Johnson retires. Dallaglio held the post until drug revelations, which he denied, forced him to step down in 1999.
"I'm fairly realistic and philosophical about it," he said "Form is going to be the most decisive factor in any decision and I am playing well."
Johnson has captained England 39 times during his 84 Tests, and played in the Five Nations Grand Slam in 1995 and Six Nations Grand Slam in 2003. He made his debut for England with a win against France at Twickenham in 1993. He also led the British and Irish Lions twice, winning the South African series in 1997 but losing in Australia in 2001.
Former England captain Will Carling said Johnson had nothing left to prove.
"It is probably the hardest decision he will have to face. It is bizarre. It is a very personal decision for him to have to make." Carling told BBC Radio.
"Martin has been one of the most honest players we have ever had, he is one of the greatest, and I think he is going to be honest with himself. Every year you come out and want to improve as a player, as a captain, you want the side to improve - if he feels that is gone, then he should retire. He is still a world-class player, there is no doubt about that. But if the desire to prove in every area and that hunger has gone, then what else has he got to prove to anyone?
"He has been a successful Lions captain, he has won the Grand Slam as a captain, the World Cup - he has done everything. It is quite an incredible record that he has, and maybe that is where he has suddenly thought there is nothing else, no other peaks for me to climb," added Carling who retired in 1997 after winning 72 caps.