Donald Driver Press Conference Transcript - Jan. 18

(Brett was just making the point a few minutes ago that in these kinds of conditions that are forecast for Sunday, it's less an athletic competition and more of a test of wills. What sense do you have of that?)

I think it's the same thing. I think it's a test of wills because I always look at it as a mind game. When you go into this game, you know the conditions you can't control them, so you basically have to just go play regardless of the situation. It's going to be a mind game because if you let your mind tell you it's cold, it's going to be cold. But if you let your mind tell you it's warm, that you're in Hawaii somewhere, then that's where you're going to feel like you're at. That's why I always say I'm somewhere warm, maybe down in Texas.

(Have you been frustrated at all this season about not getting into the end zone probably as much as you want, only a couple of touchdowns on the year? Has that ever been a thought in your mind at all?)

No, not at all. I always feel like I can't control that. I'm not the one throwing the ball, so I don't control it. I just basically run my route, and if I get it, I get it, and if I don't, then you don't complain about it. I think my contribution is just going out there and making plays whenever I've got the opportunity, and every time I've got the opportunity I make the best out of it. I think a lot of people feel like you have to score touchdowns to get the recognition, but I didn't feel like I had to do that this year. I think it was a proven fact if you go out there and do your job then everyone around the National Football League understands that.

(In talking to guys in the locker room, you guys want to get Brett back to the Super Bowl, but more than one player told me they want to get Donald Driver to the Super Bowl. How does that make you feel, and how does it feel to be one step away from the biggest game of your life?)

I'm happy about it right now. I'm still, I guess I don't get myself too juiced up about it right now because I know that I'm only one game away. But I remember talking to our receiving group right before we played Detroit, and I told those guys that those guys have a long career here, I'm winding down on mine, and I just ask that you guys get me to the Super Bowl. My biggest thing with them was Greg kind of mentioned, well, let's get you the past this Detroit game and let's get you to the second round playoff game. And then James threw his little two cents in and said he wanted to get me to the championship game. So now I'm here, and I think Ruvell told me today that he's going to try to get me to the Super Bowl. When you have those type of guys that come up to you and respect the things that you do, you're happy for that.

(When you look at Brett's numbers over the past three years, the interceptions have gone down, completion percentage has gone up; it looks like his game was kind of transformed somewhat as he gets to the later stage of his career. Would you agree with that? And if so, what role do you think McCarthy played in that?)

Well, I just think when you look at last year, if you go back to last year and the year before that, I think he threw a lot of interceptions because we didn't have those type of weapons that we have now, especially at the receiving group. I think he was trying to force the ball to me, and at that time you look around and you don't have a problem with it. You're trying to win games regardless of the situation. But I think he realized that he had more weapons. He started trusting guys, and now that you look around, we've got five of the best receivers in the National Football League, and he can throw to any one and feel confident in doing it.

(Brett was saying that you guys were using footballs taken out of a freezer today in practice. Have you done that during the course of the year, and what purpose is served?)

No, we have never done it. This week I think that's what they wanted to do. Basically they never told us that the balls were coming out of the freezer, we just kind just felt it as we caught it, wow, the balls are cold. We thought most likely the balls had been outside all day, but they were in the freezer. They were kind of slippery. Mostly I think it's for concentration because when it's warm weather you basically don't have to concentrate too much on the ball. Basically if you've got good hands, you're going to catch. But I don't care how good your hands is, in cold weather you have to focus on the ball and make sure you catch it before you run with it.

(As a wide receiver, how does your assignment or your preparation change against a team that has such a good pass rush, which would change the dynamics at that end? How does your role change?)

My role doesn't change at all. I think our scheme as far as how we play the game and how Coach McCarthy has put the game plan in, that's how we play the game. We don't let the other team dictate how we play the game. We play the game the way we play it. That's Green Bay football. Regardless of what they do to us, we're a team right now, our receiving group, we lead the league in yards after the catch. So I think we want the ball in our hands to make sure we do what we do. If they blitz us, we're able to get the ball in our hands, Brett can get the ball out quick, then it's hard to stop us.

(Can you just talk about how Coach McCarthy, what kind of tone he set as far as the chemistry goes and maybe if that's a big element of what has gone right this year?)

Well, the only thing that Coach McCarthy has been saying is just keep it loose. He's one of those coaches that he doesn't want to get all uptight about anything. All season long he's telling us we only can beat ourselves, no team can beat us. We noticed that because the three games that we lost this year, we lost them on our own. There wasn't anyone that came out and just beat us flat out. We made the mistake that cost us the game. He's been real focused on making sure that we know that we only can beat ourselves, and it's just like in this game coming up, if we make mistakes we will lose. But we've been having preparation all week to not make mistakes, and the first thing it is, is ball security.

{sportsad300}(If it's relatively windless on Sunday, will it make it a little easier or a lot easier for a receiver?)

You're saying if it's not windy?


If it's not windy, it's going to make it so much fun because we get the ball in our hands; it's easy for Brett to throw. We all know he can throw with the wind blowing, as well. But I think it's easier for a receiver to catch the ball if it's not windy. If the wind is not blowing hard and we're able to get the ball in our hands, then we're dangerous.

(A lot of these players talk about trying to get you to the Super Bowl, but is there something you say to them to take advantage of these opportunities while you have them because you know first-hand they don't come around that often?)

I haven't said too much. I'm one of those guys, I don't talk a lot. I try to just let my play show. That's one thing that I've always said is that this is only one chance to get there, and this is everybody's childhood dream is to get in the Super Bowl and also to win it. I'm just hoping that come Sunday we're able to go out there and do things that we have to do to get there.

(You're one of the few receivers to go sleeveless. Are you going to go sleeveless tomorrow, and what does that prove?)

Yeah, I'll go sleeveless tomorrow. It doesn't change anything. I think I've had my, I guess you can say I've had my affairs with fumbles, and that's one thing I've said I don't ever want to do again. I was telling Jimmy (Robinson), that's why I stopped wearing sleeves because I remember against Tennessee I had, that Monday night against Tennessee we were losing real bad and I had a fumble that was a key play in the game. After that I stopped wearing sleeves and said I'd just rather freeze than to fumble again.

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