Al Harris Press Conference Transcript - Jan. 18

(You're known to be a high-energy guy. People that know you know you're that way. You're going to play in one of the biggest football games of your life. What are your emotions like 48 hours away?)

Well, I pretty much just try to stay calm and cool until the game actually starts. But I'm a real just laid back guy until the game actually starts. So I'm just relaxing and preparing.

(I actually have a follow up question to that. It's a little different topic. Earlier today the Giants had their news conference, and when Eli Manning was at the podium he was asked about the secondary and the corners in particular for you guys, and he said that they're good and he said some nice things. He said they also take a lot of penalties. That's something we might look to try and do, not only make the completions but try and get these guys into situations where they go beyond the limits of legality and get caught for it.)

Thank you, Eli, for giving us the heads up. You know, it comes with our style of defense. You know, you may get some penalties. That's what you give up, you know what I mean, by playing press coverage pretty much every down. You'll get some penalties.

(Having played against Toomer and Burress in the past, what are their strengths?)

Both of them are good receivers, very good receivers. I have a lot of respect for both of them. I think that the young guy, No. 12, is doing a great job, also. But their strengths are they can go up and get the ball. They're big bodies, they're big targets. Eli can pretty much throw the ball in an area, and both of those guys have the ability to make a catch.

(Can you explain how this team is able to forget mistakes or bad plays the way some other teams that you played out here had trouble adjusting to, and how hard is that to develop as a skill in this game?)

Well, I think we went through that last year to forget the bad plays, so we had a whole year to work on that pretty much. To say we're at a point now, we may have a young team, but the guys are pretty mature, so we know every game is not going to be perfect. So there will be some mistakes, there will be some bad plays. The opponents will make some plays. You know, we just keep going. If we do something good, we keep playing. Bob (Sanders) always says if we do something bad, we keep playing.

(Can you talk a little bit about this season personally, how it's been for you getting voted to the Pro Bowl and now leading up to the NFC Championship, what it's been like personally this season?)

Well, both personal and team goals, we're doing a good job. We're here in the NFC Championship game. And as far as the Pro Bowl, that's one of my personal goals, which I'm pretty sure every player in the league has that as a personal goal. It's a blessing to get recognized by your peers, but as a team goal, our goal is to make it to Arizona, and we're one step away.

(I know you weren't happy by any means to see Coach Sherman go two years ago, but now that Mike is here, what has he done to be successful and how would you describe his coaching style?)

I think Mike is sort of to say, you know, when people say guys are player coaches, I guess at one point in time that was something bad, but Mike is a player's coach, but he's not a softie at all. Everybody respects him, and he respects everybody. He treats us like men, you know what I mean? He doesn't look down on you. Not to say that Coach Sherman did that because he didn't. Coach Sherman treated us like men, too. But Mike's strength is, there's rule guys and there's guideline guys, and Mike handles it like that. Young players, rookies and maybe guys through their third year, you know, you go strictly by the rules. And there's older players, we've got some guys that have been here like 90 years, they're guideline guys. Mike separates the two and he treats us like men. We know what we have to do, we know our responsibilities, and he's like, okay, handle it.

{sportsad300}(Charles the other day talked about perceptions of Green Bay when he was being courted to come here and the perception that Green Bay is not a place for a black man. That's kind of what he said. He's kind of changed his tune the longer he's been here. What about yourself? Have you grown to like Green Bay in the time that you've been here? And has this whole experience turned out to be different than you thought when you first came over?)

No, it's exactly what I expected, you know what I mean? I went to junior college in a small town similar to Green Bay, Athens, Texas and transferred to Kingsville, Texas, which is a small town. I've been playing in small towns a lot, so I knew what to expect. I've spent some time in Philadelphia and spent some time in Tampa. They're a little larger. But I knew what to expect, and just the whole atmosphere, everything, I'm cool with it.

(Having played in the NFC Championship before, how do you think your teammates have handled this week, and do you see any similarities or differences between this team and that 2002 Eagles team?)

I think we're doing a great job. As far as, like I said, we've got a lot of young guys, but they're mature. I think we're doing a great job of just handling the success of the team and the magnitude of this game. No one is getting too high, no one is getting too low. It's pretty important to stay even-keel until game time.

(We understand that the offense either this whole week or today in practice has been putting footballs into freezers to simulate game conditions for Sunday, and I'm wondering if you've got your hands on one of those and what it felt like if you did and what you thought about the process of doing that?)

Is that what was going on?

(You did get your hands on one?)

Is that what was going on? That's pretty smart, whoever came up with that. You know, it is what it is. It's going to be cold. Balls are going to be cold. I got my hands on a couple of balls, and it's still a football. If you're playing in negative 30 or extreme heat, you know, it's still football.

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