QB Aaron Rodgers

201227-postgame-quotes

TITANS at PACKERS
Sunday, Dec. 27, 2020

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(on not being distracting by not being able to clinch home field tonight) "Obviously we knew what was going on in Seattle and it just turned into wanting to put on a show. We had an opportunity to be on prime time against a really good opponent. I think we all heard enough about us not beating enough good teams. Not responding and playing a complete game, and this was our response. I feel good about where we're at. It's tough to play in the cold and it's tough to play in Lambeau and I felt we proved that tonight. I thought the defense played outstanding. Offensively we had great balance. We ran the (heck) out of the ball. Guys were great up front and really good with protection and then Davante (Adams) did what Davante's been doing."

(on RB AJ Dillon's performance tonight) "Mike (McCarthy) and I used to always talk about big backs in the wintertime. We've had some good ones over the years. AG (Ahman Green) when I got here. Ryan Grant for a number of years, one of the toughest slashers we've had, but a big back and tough to tackle. Obviously, Eddie Lacy, so it's in that mold there. The field changes. The temperature changes, and it's a different type of ball game. I thought our defense tackled really well against their big back (Derrick Henry). Obviously, he had 98 yards, but what he's been averaging was considerably more than that, so they did a great job tackling him. AJ was great. I thought he ran well and I thought he had some momentum runs for him. As a young player, there's plays throughout the game that almost surprise you and you can surprise yourself and you get that confidence right away. I think he had a few of those plays where he felt like he may have been tackled quickly and he breaks out of it and turns a 3-yard gain into an 8-yard gain, and the touchdown on the fourth down was a really big play, we checked out of a pass into a run. I felt really good about running on the right side of the line. Running behind 'big dawg' (Marcedes Lewis) is always a good thing. Then Allen (Lazard) had a nice block and then he had 1-on-1 on a corner and ran through an arm tackle and then ran through another tackle, so there's a lot of confidence plays for him and I was really happy for him. He's a good kid and he's been through a lot this year. Obviously, with COVID and the issues with that, but it's good having him back. Jonesy (Aaron Jones) was a little banged up I think but he had a couple big runs for us and hopefully we'll get Jamaal (Williams) back next week but I feel really good about where we're at offensively."

(on the importance of playing a complete game against a good team) "I feel good about the response that we had. Obviously, they doubled up on us basically with the touchdown before the end of the first half and coming out for the second half and a three-score game turned into a one-score game. (But) a big run by Jonesy and then a really nice adjustment by Davante and we're back up 12. Three-and-out. We get the ball back and go down and score and we're back up 19 so that was obviously big momentum swings for us. Again, this is a tough place to play, and the weather we had tonight, it was beautiful. I was laying around on the couch all afternoon watching the snow come down and just hoping that it was going to last. Looking at the phone and seeing what the percentages were, just because these are the special (games). Haven't had too many like this where there's been consistent snow. Most of the ones if not all of the ones that we've had have been pretty similar to this with a victory like the way we played tonight."

(on his 5-yard run before halftime) "Man, I was tired. I think I had to walk up the tunnel because I was a little gassed by that, and then I had a fun little exchange on the sideline. Not sure if the mics picked up any of that stuff but definitely one where if any of those guys had been mic'd up it would've been something you'd want to go back and look at for years."

(on what he'll think about more tonight: the four pass TDs or the one interception) "Well, the pick, obviously, because that's how I am. It was a pretty solid game throwing the ball. I felt like I was in a good rhythm and I was putting it where I wanted to. Obviously Davante made a couple of 'Davante plays' and you know (Davante) felt bad about (the interception) but I was sitting on the bench and all I was thinking about was Tom Clements' voice in my head going 'late down the middle' one of the QB mortal sins that I broke. That's a frustrating one, but it was a solid game and I feel good about the performance of our offense. I felt like I was in a pretty good rhythm all day. It was similar to last week where we were running the ball so well I just had to be patient and we had some good opportunities with some run solution stuff down in the red zone and Davante made the first little key work and then fade for a touchdown. It was a solid game, but I will be thinking about (the interception) and sending Tom a text later probably, too."

(on the challenges of the field conditions for the offense) "The difficulty is with the ball. The ball becomes a lot slicker. Obviously with the field, when they take the tarp off 90 minutes before the game, the field changes. Then the snow is able to seep in the grass and it becomes very slick. Then there's a freezing process again that can happen. Today was not as cold as some other games we've had but a lot of times it makes the field even more slick. But, the ball is definitely more difficult to throw in these type of conditions. I've played in a lot of these games so I feel pretty good about being able to throw it should we have snow and wind like we did today. That's just something we're used to. We practice outdoors. We play in these types of games."

(on seeing the defense struggle with the field conditions) "We felt like, getting into the flow of the game, we could run the ball and control the line of scrimmage. They hadn't had a bunch of sacks the last few weeks. They bring a lot of pressure but a lot of times it's a four-man rush or five-man rush with an extra guy so we did a pretty good job in picking up most of them. I basically ran into the only sack of the game on fourth down. I thought the (offensive) line really dominated up front and we ran the ball well and threw it halfway decent."

(on the third-and-10 deep ball to Davante Adams on the final touchdown drive) "We had a draw called with an option to get to a pass and I kind of alerted a slightly different adjustment on that one. I wanted to take a shot with Davante. I figured they were either going to play super soft or up big time, I didn't think there was going to be any in-between. And based on the pre-snap I could tell that there was something coming and they brought heavy pressure. I just tried to get the ball up early to Davante. He made a spectacular catch. I mean, it's a spectacular catch in September, but we're talking about Dec. 27 in this type of weather. It's cold, the ball is slick. He's a special, special player."

(on if the defense was Super Bowl caliber tonight) "Yeah that was championship-style defense. I felt like they played with more confidence than maybe they have at any point this season. The disguises I saw were really good and they had to be because they run an offense that is similar to us. It's a lot of checking at the line of scrimmage. Run-to-pass, pass-to-run stuff and I thought they did a nice job of it. I thought we tackled really well. I thought Mike (Pettine) did a great job. We had a couple turnovers. Had chances for a couple more, but really happy for Kirk-O (Christian Kirksey), he was a total impact in the game with the sack, the TFL and a pick and (Darnell) Savage has really had a good stretch of football the last four-five games for us. 'Ja' (Jaire Alexander) is just so consistent, and they have a couple really good receivers who have been putting together some big-time games the last few weeks especially, and they held them down really well." 

(on the importance to have big implications on the season-finale against the Bears) "I think it's important. Even if Los Angeles had won today, the plan was to play (next week). But, now that that scenario is out, it's business as usual. We would have wanted to play either way. We've gone different ways over the years when we've had the No. 1 or 2 seeds locked up. I think the sentiment was to play so now that that's out of the question we have to win to get the one seed and it feels like the playoffs started last week. Obviously, that team was a great team record-wise, but this is a team that's in the playoffs and next week is a team that has a chance to be in the playoffs, so we know what kind of game that's going to be next week in Chicago." 

(on what he's learned from Davante Adams) "It doesn't feel like we've played together that long, which is interesting. The years with Jordy (Nelson) and Randall (Cobb) were longer but when you look at it, we have played a number of seasons together. It's a lot of football. It's been fun to see our friendship grow over the years. I have a ton of respect for him as a person, I think he's a fantastic human being and it's an honor to play with him. I love his approach. He's such a great competitor. He's very hard on himself but he has positive self-talk which I think is a great combination. He's a sponge and he's always been a sponge. He soaks up so many things from all the interactions and it's just fun to be able to have the unspoken communication with a guy like that. It's been a special week for me. A lot of great moments this Christmas week for me personally, and one of them was being able to give him a little present but I wrote him a long message and just let him know how important he is to me and how much I value his friendship and I appreciate the way he inspires me and our team. I just can't say enough great things about the kind of person he is and then when you have the talent and ability and go out there and dominate the way he has. I've said for so long that Charles (Woodson) was the best player that I've played with and Charles could dominate in a way I've never seen a nickel corner dominate before, but it's probably time to start putting Davante in that conversation because he's that type of player. He's a special player." 

(on if he could sense AJ Dillon's big game coming) "It is surprising. It's surprising just because he hasn't had a lot of reps. We were unsure whether he was even going to come back, I think. I remember one day walking from the locker room to the walk through and we saw AJ and I said, 'Hey, you're back.' It was fun to see him back and I think he worked his way back into shape for a couple weeks but he hasn't had the opportunity to show us this. Everybody at this level has done this at some point. They've had a game, whether it's high school or college, where they've balled out like this. But it does take that one NFL game or a few NFL games to remind yourself what you're capable of and that's the exciting thing, I think, for a young player is just to see the confidence grow and the momentum runs that he had. So, yeah, it was a surprise. Not that we didn't think he could do this, we just hadn't seen it."

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