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Packers: Rodgers & Emotional Game Days

Senior writer jclombardi highlights QB Rodgers & emotional game days.

Rodgers gets miffed at mental miscues: Getting on your teammates for mental mistakes is something every quarterback has done, but only some can actually do it and not risk mutiny within the ranks. On Sunday against San Francisco, Rodgers was very demonstrative in pointing out mental errors, dressing down fullback Quinn Johnson, chirping at tight end Quarless and in one instance, seemingly getting irate with wide receiver Donald Driver. Many a quarterback has blown off steam, but most have been careful to contain it. “I think as a quarterback and as a leader, you have to find ways to get through to your teammates,” Rodgers said. “Some guys do better with a confrontation, some guys with a pat on the butt, some guys a one-on-one sit-down. I’m an emotional player, and sometimes I share my emotions on the field, sometimes I share them in public. But I think some of the mistakes we’ve been making are so correctable, it’s often most frustrating when I know those are mistakes that shouldn’t happen. And when you’re playing a tight game, you can’t have alignment mistakes.” Rodgers was speaking more of the mistakes by Quarless and Johnson. Rodgers patted Johnson on the helmet after chewing him out. Rodgers had to call a timeout because Quarless apparently wasn’t lined up right. “Sometimes I say things,” Rodgers said. “I guess it’s frustrating when it’s a little thing and it shouldn’t be an issue. You’re probably talking about me getting on Quinn a little bit when he couldn’t line up in the right spot. To me, that goes back to preparation. To me, physical mistakes are going to happen. I’m going to throw a bad ball, guys are going to drop passes, might not be able to make a play at some point. But the mental stuff, I just have a really hard time with that. Because I just feel like the preparation should be the most important thing for these guys.” Driver said he accepts Rodgers for the kind of person he is. He admitted Rodgers is cocky, “but in a good way.” “I’m cocky,” Driver said. “It goes hand in hand. I think I’m one of the best. He thinks he’s one of the best quarterbacks. That’s pretty good.”

Rodgers–‘Sometimes I share my emotions on the field’: He’s an emotional guy with high expectations, and that’s not going to change. “I think as a quarterback and as a leader,  you have to find ways to get through to your teammates. Some guys do better with a confrontation, some guys with a pat on the butt, some guys a one-on-one sit-down,” Rodgers explained at his locker after practice, as the team prepared for Sunday’s game against the Detroit Lions. “I’m an emotional player, and sometimes I share my emotions on the field, sometimes I share them in public. But I think some of the mistakes we’ve been making are so correctable, it’s often most frustrating when I know those are mistakes that shouldn’t happen.” The most recent example occurred in last Sunday’s 34-16 victory over the 49ers. With the Packers trying to grind out as much clock with a 31-16 lead, Rodgers was facing a first-and-10 from the San Francisco 38-yard line and had to burn a timeout when fullback Johnson lined up incorrectly. Rodgers didn’t hide his irritation, and it was clear as he came off the field that Johnson was the target. “To me, that goes back to preparation,” Rodgers said. “The way I look at it, physical mistakes are going to happen. I’m going to throw a bad ball; guys are going to drop passes, might not be able to make a play at some point. But the mental stuff, I just have a really hard time with that. Because I just feel like the preparation should be the most important thing for these guys. There’s no excuses in my opinion to (have) that many mental mistakes.” Earlier, in the first quarter, Rodgers had to burn another timeout and appeared to be peeved at Johnson and rookie tight end Andrew Quarless. After the game, Rodgers suggested that a little more preparation might have prevented the mistakes. “When you’ve playing a tight game, you can’t have alignment mistakes,” Rodgers said. “Preparation is the most important thing because the little mistakes are amplified.” The most obvious example was at Atlanta, when Quarless and Johnson were both in the same area on a first-and-goal pass from the Falcons’ 2-yard line. Johnson leaped to try to catch the pass, which appeared to be intended for Quarless, and heard about it afterward. While Quarless admitted that it is embarrassing to be chastised in front of fans, he said he believes that Rodgers does it only because he sees potential in him. Rodgers does most of his criticizing in practice and the value he places on practicing well was evident in one of the things. In his response to a question about Starks, Rodgers praised injured running back Grant, injured tight end Finley and four of his five wide receivers for their practice habits. Since Rodgers rarely if ever says something without having thought it through first, his message was undeniable.


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