Opponent Opinions: WR Donald Driver

As of early Thursday afternoon, the Dolphins still didn't know whether they would be facing quarterback Aaron Rodgers Sunday at Green Bay. We do know that starting tight end Jermichael Finley will miss the game, but what we do know is that Green Bay still has a lot of weapons in the passing game.

One of those is veteran wide receiver Donald Driver, who spoke to South Florida reporters this week via conference call. Here's what Driver had to say on a variety of topics:

On how he became such a great slot receiver: "(It is) just one of those things. (If you) get the opportunity, they always say that guys that can play the slot can can play a long time. I guess when you look at what I have done throughout my career, I have always been in the slot. I took that position from Antonio Freeman and just got the opportunity to move forward. Free showed me everything I need to know to be able to play that position. I guess you could say it's worked for me."

On the attributes you have to have to be successful in the slot: "(You have to) not be afraid go across the middle number one. Number two, being able to read defenses. That's where you make your bread and butter. If you can read defenses, when you get one-on-one with linebacker down middle and it's a win-win situation for you. That's the main focus."

On all of the team's injuries this early in the season: "In 2004 or 2005 we had a bunch of guys get hurt, we went through six running backs that year. So we've had that adversity. But one thing I know, the guys were able to step up and fill those guys' shoes. So right now we know we've got a lot of guys down, but the guys we do have we think will step up and be able to play."

On what he knows about the health of Aaron Rodgers so far: "Nothing. Last time I talked to him was this morning and he said he felt good. That was basically it. I don't know anything else yet."

On Matt Flynn: "We're very confident in Matt. What I've seen of Matt since got here is his confidence is rising. He went out in preseason and got back to back wins for us. We trust him, we know what he can do. He believes in us and we believe in him. So he's just gotta go out and execute and have fun. And if we have fun for him, he's going to go out there and play."

On the team's success at home: "That's when you want to win. You have eight game at home and want win them all. They always say we have a home-field advantage, and our crowd has always kept us in a game regardless of the situation. So playing at home, that's when you have to rise to occasion. If you win eight at home and split on road, with a 12-4 record most likely you're going to be in the playoffs."

On the success on the team's first drives: "Every guy making a play. One thing we've said in our offensive meetings is we always want to start fast. Last year we struggled starting off and were able to finish at the end. This time we want to start fast and be able to run people out of the stadium. We haven't played our best football yet as an offense, but we feel this is the week we have to start playing, at home in front of our home crowd."

On if he likes it when the Dolphins defer: "If they do that we'll welcome the challenge. One thing we want to do is go out and score. If they give us the ball first, that's our mindset, to go out and score on the first drive."

On if there is any thought of holding guys out to be ready for the game against Minnesota: "One thing we do here is if guys can go, guys are gonna go. We can't sit back and wait for next week's game. We've gotta take each game one by one. We're playing Dolphins this week, so we need everybody."

On rookie tight end Andrew Quarless: "One thing I like about him is he's cocky. He's a confident, cocky guy, and when he first came in that's the attitude he had and I like that. You don't get many young guys come in with that type of attitude. He knows he was good in college and he can transition that to the pros. I think he knows this is his opportunity now to step up and show the world what he can do."

On how frustrating it is to have so many penalties: "Penalties have been just very frustrating. One thing we have stressed this season, one game we had 20 penalties and Chicago had four and we ended up losing game. Those penalties hurt you in big games. (You) can't have penalties if trying to beat a good team. That's one thing that we stress. When you have penalties like that they stop drives that you normally convert and put you in bad situations. We have to make sure we don't do that and play well."

On if he still feels they are a Super Bowl contender: "I don't think the confidence about the Super Bowl has left us. We know what we can do. There's 53 guys on this team, 18 coaches, and that's all that has to believe. If we believe we're going to make it to the Super Bowl then we're gonna be there. You have to have everyone believing in what you want to achieve and that's putting that ring on your finger."

On Benny Sapp: "He reminds me of Antoine Winfield, played against those guys in Minnesota. He's a little scrappy guy who loves to get down and dirty. That's the way you have to be in that slot position, because you have so many talented receivers that can play that slot with quickness and are able to catch the ball. He's aggressive; you have to give him credit. He's been playing this game a long time. He knows when you step up there it's always going to be a battle. Week in and week out he puts pressure on self to shut slot down, and the person who plays that position says he's going to beat them. It's going to be a battle, have to execute your job and hope you win."

On if the hunger after being 7th-rounder ever leave you and if he roots for a player like Davone Bess that went undrafted: "You cheer guys on. People say first-round picks get everything thrown to them. When a guy comes in as a seventh-rounder he has to earn everything. You look at me and other guys like that; you have to give them credit when they go and play at a high level, when they know their backs are against the wall. My back was against the wall in 1999 and now my back is off the wall. I'm having fun and enjoying the game."


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