Skip to main content

Aaron Rodgers Pro Bowl Diary

Green Bay Packers Pro Bowl selections Aaron Rodgers, Nick Collins and Clay Matthews all arrived in Miami on Tuesday and had their first official football activities on Wednesday in preparation for Sunday’s AFC-NFC showdown. will be posting diary updates from all of the players over the next few days as they check in from Miami. Today’s first installment is from Rodgers.


*Green Bay Packers Pro Bowl selections Aaron Rodgers, Nick Collins and Clay Matthews all arrived in Miami on Tuesday and had their first official football activities on Wednesday in preparation for Sunday's AFC-NFC showdown at Sun Life Stadium. (Cornerback Charles Woodson declined to participate, citing injury issues.) will be posting diary updates from all of the players over the next few days as they check in from Miami, a new location for the Pro Bowl. The game has traditionally been in Hawaii the week following the Super Bowl, but this year it's the week prior and at the location of the big game.

Today's first installment is from Rodgers, who was informed earlier this week that he would be the starting quarterback for the NFC after New Orleans' Drew Brees advanced to the Super Bowl and Minnesota's Brett Favre decided not to play.

The NFC is under the tutelage of the Dallas Cowboys' coaching staff, and Rodgers begins this diary entry there while also discussing the relaxed atmosphere and some off-the-field plans.*

I really like the Dallas coaches. I knew (offensive coordinator) Jason Garrett through the Combine and through our individual meeting when he was with Miami, when I was coming out in '05 and getting drafted. I really liked him and am excited about working with him. Wade Wilson, the quarterback coach, I know his story. He played in the league for a number of years, so it's fun working with him, and receivers coach Ray Sherman as well. I didn't play for Ray (when he was Green Bay's receivers coach from 2000-04), but I met him a couple years ago, and I know Donald Driver and some of the older guys have a lot of respect for him. And I've met Wade Phillips over the last few years at different of events, so I really like him. It's a good staff on offense. I'm looking forward to working with them.

We had an administrative meeting last night, signed what seemed like about 5,000 footballs and then this morning we had our offensive meeting. We installed the whole offense in 15 minutes, and then we had practice after that. It's very casual, just in helmets and shorts today. A very walk-through like tempo, for some guys anyway. Some guys are going a little faster than others, but older guys were definitely walk-through tempo. There were a lot of laughs out there.

I hadn't thrown in two weeks and hadn't really thrown without pads on in a while. The ball was coming out pretty good. I think I surprised some people. A couple of guys were going a little slower and weren't maybe expecting the ball to get on them that quick. These are the most talented guys in the league, so it's going to take a little bit to get used to the Dallas Cowboys' routes, and how each individual guy runs their routes. But we're going to try to work some of that out in these practices, and when the game comes you just have to make plays.

Actually, I'm buddies with a few of these guys. I wanted to see (Arizona safety) Antrel Rolle and thank him for what he said after we played them in the playoffs. Also, I was excited about meeting Mike Jenkins, the corner for Dallas. I have a lot of respect for him. He's a very talented player. It's been fun so far. You get to play against these guys, get to know them a little bit on the field, but this is more of a relaxed atmosphere where you really get to spend some good time with them.

It's pretty special to have three Green Bay guys here too. Unfortunately 'Wood' with his injuries couldn't make it. But it's nice to be able to spend time with those guys. Clay and I have become good buddies over this last year, and Nick and I were obviously drafted in the same class together. It's fun to have two '05 guys in the Pro Bowl at the same time, and I've been very proud of Nick and the success that he's been having, and I hope we can get him signed for the long term. It's great having a guy like Clay as well, a young guy who really gets it, who's a true pro, and he played at a very high level this year.

{sportsad300}Your goal at the beginning of the season is to go to the Super Bowl, so obviously Miami was the target. Not this week in Miami, though. It's very flattering and a great honor to be voted in by the fans, your fellow players and coaches as well. You have to look at it that way. Obviously this is not my main goal, but this is a great perk at the end of a long season.

I think the most exciting thing is knowing that I'm starting. That's a pretty special honor. There's only one starter at every position. I know I wasn't directly voted the starter, but because of the way things shook down, it's a great honor to know that I'll be starting my first Pro Bowl.

The older guys who have been to multiple Pro Bowls say that nothing is like Hawaii, but this is my first go-round at it, and I'm excited about just being here. I have zero complaints. It's a great hotel in a great spot next to the beach, and hopefully I'll try to get some color here the next few days.

I brought my best friend from Huntington Beach here with me. My brother and another close friend are coming out from San Diego, and another good friend from Green Bay is coming down. We have little events that we're doing every night for the NFL, but there's a couple other things I'd like to do. I'd like to go out in Miami at least one night, and also I would like to do some stuff on the beach here. I don't know if it's rent a jet ski, or something like that. There's a lot of fun stuff to do out here.

It's exciting being here. It would be nice to make this an every-year occurrence. But that's going to take a lot of hard work, guys around myself doing their jobs well, and me doing my job well. And I think it takes a little good luck as well, to avoid injury and to have a team around you that's playing well. As much as this is looked at as an individual achievement, it takes an entire team for something like this to happen.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.