Five Packers Share Thoughts on NFLEL Title Game

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On Saturday, five Packers representatives will take the field for the Yello Strom World Bowl XIV at LTU Arena in Düsseldorf, Germany (11 A.M. CDT, NFL Network), pitting the Amsterdam Admirals against the Frankfurt Galaxy.

Throughout the season, Admiral's standout receiver Chad Lucas has penned a diary for Packers.com detailing Amsterdam's road to the championship, as well as his personal journey.

Here's a look at the five Packers playing for the NFL Europe crown with their thoughts on the World Bowl and on completing the NFLEL season.

AMSTERDAM ADMIRALS

S Atari Bigby

Started all 10 contests at free safety and finished with a team-high 61 tackles (43 solo), with one interception among four passes defensed...Also posted five tackles on special teams.

On the World Bowl experience (as of Thursday morning):

"We've just been practicing and hanging out a lot, so far. We've dealt with the media a little, but mostly just doing football related things now."

On having a reputation as a hard-hitter:

"That just means that I've been around the ball a lot and playing the game the way it's supposed to be played."

On the NFL Europe experience:

"This has been one of the best experiences of my life, being able to be in a different part of the world. Honestly, I enjoyed it, but hopefully I won't have to do it again next year because I'll be on the team.

"I feel like overall I'm a better player. I feel like I needed to come here and I'm glad I did. Hopefully it will carry over when I get back to Green Bay."

WR Vince Butler

Played in all 10 games as a reserve receiver and made 13 catches for 174 yards and one rush for 13 yards.

On playing in the World Bowl:

"It's great. I've never had a chance to play in a championship game, so this is the next best thing to a Super Bowl. It's a real humbling experience for me."

On the Amsterdam fans:

"We will probably have about 8,000 fans come down (to watch the World Bowl). They're not like Packers fans, but they are good."

On the possibility of winning the World Bowl:

"That would be the best thing ever. I've been working towards making the team, then working on getting better, so winning a championship would be the ultimate."

On his personal improvement:

"I've improved tremendously from the first practice until now. Even Coach (Bart Andrus) and our offensive coordinator told me I've been improving everyday. It just gives me more experience and more confidence. I'm going to come in with a different mindset than I did as a rookie; I'm not going to think as much. I'm just going to play football."

TE Tory Humphrey

Has started 10 contests at tight end, finishing fourth on the team with 19 catches for 206 yards and one TD.

On the significance of playing in the World Bowl:

"It means that we have accomplished the goal we set for ourselves back in training camp - for the Admirals to make it back to the World Bowl. Now we just have to win it."

On his anticipation leading up to the game:

"Anytime you get to play in a championship at any level, it's special. I won a state championship in high school and now I have a chance to win the World Bowl this weekend."

On the NFL Europe experience:

"When I was first told, I really didn't want to come because I have two little girls and I didn't want to leave my family. But I got here and got settled in. I'm happy I came and I've made a lot of friends. It's been a great experience."

WR Chad Lucas

*Started nine of 10 games at wide receiver...Named to the All-NFL Europe League team...Finished the regular season with a NFLEL-leading eight touchdowns; was second on the team in receptions with 27 for 440 yards...Was awarded Offensive Player of the Week for Week 4 after catching a league-record four touchdowns in a 38-31 victory over the Berlin Thunder; he finished the game with six catches for 120 yards. *

On the opportunity to play in the World Bowl:

"I feel great, but we're not done yet. We've got one game to go and then I'll be satisfied for right now. We've got to win then get a quick flight back home. I'll look back and be satisfied, and then it's time for the next level.

"Playing in the World Bowl means a lot, because that's what we set out to do from Day One. It's great to know that you can accomplish something if you put your mind to it and work hard for it."

On keys to victory:

"We really need to take care of the ball. We'll be good if we can finish every possession with a kick. That's what Coach (Bart Andrus) has been preaching a lot and that's what we're going to do."

On the NFL Europe experience:

"Being in Europe and living in another culture has been great. And playing has been fun. You pay so much attention to the business side of football that you forget about having fun, so playing in NFL Europe has been great from that standpoint."

FRANKFURT GALAXY

DT Jerome Nichols

Started all 10 games at left defensive tackle... Named to the All-NFL Europe League team...Tied for a league-leading six sacks, while also logging 29 tackles (27 solo), plus a forced fumble and five passes defensed.

On getting a chance to play in the World Bowl:

"Anytime you play football, obviously the goal is to make it to the championship game and to win it. That's where we are right now and it's something we're proud of."

On his personal improvement:

"As a player, it's given me an opportunity to get more experience. Last year (with the Washington Redskins) I didn't get much experience, just in the preseason. So I think it's made me a better player down-to-down, getting a lot of repetitions.

"I've gained a lot of confidence knowing that when I line up against a guy, I'm just as good or better than he is. When you bring confidence together with your athletic ability, it makes you a lot better."

On keys to victory:

"On defense, the first thing is to always stop the run. With (Amsterdam), it's no different, even though they pass the ball 80-percent of the time. Shut down the run first, then get after the quarterback -- the rest will handle itself."

On his NFL Europe experience:

"When I found out, I was excited to go because I was ready to play ball again after sitting out all of last year. I was anxious to get on the field and play football everyday. Looking back on the experience, even though it's not over, I'm definitely glad I came. I got experience and I got better; no complaints here."

On being named All-NFL Europe and leading the league in sacks:

"It's good. You want to be the best at what you do, no matter what it is, and being named to that team and leading the league in sacks speaks to that. It's a testament to the whole defense. A lot of guys could've been up there numbers-wise, but you average 50-some plays a game, so not everyone can post those numbers. I think our defense has played very well as a whole."

*For additional information on the Yello Strom World Bowl XIV, please visit: www.nfleurope.com

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