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Driver, Favre Overcome Early Struggles


Throughout the first half of Sunday's ballgame against the Detroit Lions, the Green Bay Packers offense was frustrated by the blustery conditions of Lambeau Field.

Brett Favre completed just three passes of the 15 he attempted in the first 30 minutes of play, thanks in part to the wind gusts of up to 40 miles per hour knocking his throws off course, and also in part because of the difficulty his receivers had in catching the ball in the sub-freezing temperatures.

Led by Donald Driver's four catches for 87 yards (all of which came after halftime) though, Favre and his receivers came to life in the second half to help spark the team to a 16-13 victory and first place alone atop the NFC North.

Despite their difficulties hooking up early in the game, Favre never lost confidence in his receiving corps.

"I never get disappointed when guys drop balls," the quarterback said. "I've said that in my 13 years here and I've always said that I know that those guys don't mean to drop 'em. As difficult as it was for me to throw - with or without the wind - it was that difficult to catch it.

"Some people say, 'They pay them to catch it.' Well, they pay me to throw it and when you're signed to play here in Green Bay, you'd better be ready because the conditions in the latter part of the year are not favorable for statistics."

Driver made up for any mistakes with a great catch on a ball in the end zone Favre threaded just between defenders Keith Smith and Bracy Walker for a 23-yard touchdown in the third quarter.

"I know that Donald was very disappointed early when he dropped the ball on the third down play, but that catch he made for a touchdown trumps them all," Favre said. "And that's the type of guy Donald is. He's a hard worker, he's determined. I'll just keep throwing it to him.

"That catch that Donald made - not only was it difficult in the conditions, but there was two guys there. Either one of their guys looked like they could have picked it, but that's the way it goes."

Driver was not happy with the way the game started off for the home team offensively, but he never lost hope that they wouldn't get it together.

"We didn't play well in the first half, but in the second half we played pretty well," said Driver. "The wind kept blowing the whole game. We just had to get in the rhythm. Once we got in the rhythm, it was pretty much we were going to take care of business."

When asked about the touchdown catch, his seventh of the season, Driver said there wasn't anything complicated about it, just making a play.

"You just concentrate on the ball," said the receiver. "Once you make the catch, it's pretty much you're going to get all the cheers. You drop it and then it's going to be a lot of boos. You try to make those catches."

He added that playing with #4, he's never shocked to see the ball come his way under any circumstances.

"I've been playing with Brett for the last six years and he never surprises me. He's going to always make the key throws."

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