Quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who is 13-of-19 for 200 yards and three touchdowns in two preseason games, met with reporters on Tuesday. Here's what he had to say.
How would you assess the preseason?
I think we're doing some good things. I think we're moving the ball well. We haven't punted yet, so if we can keep that going through this week, we're going to score a lot of points. We're probably going to play a half, I would guess, at least. We've done some good things. I think it starts with the offensive line. They've done a great job. I haven't been sacked yet. Ryan's been running the ball very well, as have his backups. We feel like if we protect the passer, then we can be successful, because of the weapons that we have.
Thoughts on playing Arizona, which reached the Super Bowl last year ...
I think it's an interesting game because we play them later in the season, so I'm not sure how much both sides are going to show each other, though that will be after 15 games played. It will be interesting to see how they play. They played the first game completely different than the way they played the second game. They have a very talented group. Adrian Wilson finally is getting the kind of credit he deserves, because he's got to be one of the top guys at his position. The secondary is very talented around him. Their front seven is a veteran group that plays well together. They played at a very high level last year. Obviously, they've got a great offense. It will be a good test for us to try to move the ball against an experienced defense like that.
Looks like you've got a good connection with Donald Driver ...
I like the things we've done so far with Donald. He's a great player, and he's been a great player for a long time. The two touchdowns we've hit on have been nice because we've been on the same page on both of those plays. For him to make the adjustment that he did in Game 1 and for him to wiggle loose when I rolled out of the pocket and made a great catch last week was big for us and good for our confidence in each other. It just kind of shows we're on the same page. And then the fade I hit him down the sideline kind of back shoulder and him stopping to get the ball, that one felt good too, because when you get to that level — he's an 11th-year guy and this is my second year with the offense — when you get to a comfort level with a guy like that, it gives you a lot of confidence.
Greg Jennings has only two catches in the preseason. Would you like to get him more involved?
I was teasing him. I'm trying to spread the ball around a little bit. He's an incredible talent, a great player, and I know he's going to have a big season. I don't worry too much about Greg. He's an extremely unselfish guy, which goes a long way in that group. We've got a great group of receivers. I tease (receivers coach) Jimmy Robinson about that he's got a good group of guys to work with. We don't really have any big egos in that group and everyone pulls for each other and blocks for each other. It's nice to be able to throw to guys who want the ball but don't become bigger than the team.
How dangerous is Jermichael Finley?
He's a very athletic guy. I think a lot of things we're seeing so far in the preseason, we saw last year on the scout team. He was going against our No. 1 defense and we were kind of waiting for him to pick up the playbook, No. 1, but also to increase his speed when he worked with the first team. He was like a 4.5 guy on the scout team and like a 4.8 guy when he worked with the first team. He was just thinking too much. Like I've said the entire camp, his development and improvement has really spurred Donald Lee to raise his level of play. I think Donald's had a great camp and is going to have a big season for us.
How much stock do you put in the first two games?
I'm excited about the offense, no doubt about it. The development of Jermichael, Donald Lee and his improvement, kind of being on the same page with Donald (Driver) starting off the season feels good. I've just been trying to stay focused. It is the preseason, but any time you can start out the way we did, I think you've got to take a lot of positives out of it. I think the vibe around the locker room, especially in the offensive meeting room, is we've got something special.
Is this a different camp, now that you're in your second year as a starter and the Favre controversy is behind you?
It definitely has been a different-feeling camp. Not because of that stuff. More because of the leadership I've been talking about. Playing 16 games, getting the respect of the guys, just being looked to more for a comment here and there, being allowed to run the film in the quarterback-receiver meeting and being able to have a really big input. Donald and Greg and J.J. (James Jones) and Ruvell (Martin) look to me for more hands-on stuff on the kind of routes we're running and what I'm seeing so they can have a better idea of what I want out of them. I think that's the biggest change. The stuff that happened last year is gone, and these guys are looking to me for more leadership. It's been exciting, its been a lot more relaxed and it's been a different camp.
You're leading more, but are you comfortable in that role?
Definitely. It just helps when you have the confidence of the guys and the respect of the guys. I don't think that's something that you get right away, and I wouldn't expect it, especially with the older guys. They want to see you playing — play 16 games, play at a level that they're satisfied with, stay healthy. And then you can't help but follow or believe in someone who's there — in my opinion — who's there 95-plus percent of the offseason. It's the same way with anybody else in this room. You feel like you can count on a guy who's been here since the beginning of the offseason with you, just like about 95 percent of the guys in here have. When you get that kind of commitment from your teammates, there's a different attitude the way you look at them and being able to believe in them and know that they're in it for the right reasons.
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