16

August

Donald Driver on Packers QB Aaron Rodgers: Blah, blah, blah, blah

Donald Driver made no sense when talking about Aaron Rodgers’ leadership.

Normally I don’t care about off-the-field drama involving the Packers. I like talking and writing about football, not TMZ- or WWE-style storylines involving the Packers.

Unfortunately, Donald Driver decided to weigh in on the squabble between Aaron Rodgers and Greg Jennings and ended up piling onto the “Lets take shots at Rodgers’ leadership” bandwagon.

I don’t want to discuss what Driver (or Jennings) thinks of Rodgers’ leadership because I don’t care. I do want to address one thing Driver said because it was completely asinine. I’m all for players being honest and blunt in their comments — if you think Rodgers is a bad leader, fine, say so. But one thing Driver said wasn’t blunt, it was just dumb.

Once I’m done filleting Driver for the comment, I’ll go back to respecting him again. Everyone else should do the same. Driver’s a legend in Green Bay. Just ask him.

Driver on if Rodgers is a “me” guy:

We’ve always been in the room and we’ve always said that the quarterback is the one who needs to take the pressure off of everyone else. If a guy runs the wrong route, it’s easy for the quarterback to say, ‘Hey, I told him to run that route,’ than the guy to say, ‘Hey, I ran the wrong route.’ Sometimes you ask Aaron to take the pressure off those guys so we don’t look bad. He didn’t want to do that. He felt like if you did something bad, you do it. That’s the difference. You want that leadership. I think sometimes you may not feel like you got it.

Let’s say you’re a waitress. A group of four sits at one of your tables, orders drinks and food, and waits patiently for you to bring it out. Instead of bringing the group what they ordered, you drink all their drinks, eat all their food, and take a nap on the bathroom floor. When the group complains to the owner about what you did, the owner calls you and your manager into his office.

Is your manager a bad manager if he doesn’t take the fall and tell the owner that the only reason you ate all the customers’ food, drank their drinks and passed out in the bathroom is because he — as your manager, boss and leader — ordered you to do so?

Driver apparently thinks so. What Driver doesn’t understand is that leadership is not covering for someone’s lack of preparedness or stupid mistakes. Leadership is holding people accountable and doing everything you can to make sure they are as prepared as you are so they don’t make stupid mistakes.

If what Driver describes actually is good leadership, then I want Rodgers to remain a “bad” leader for the rest of his time with the Packers.

Now back to football…

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Adam Czech is a freelance reporter and a Packers fan living in the Twin Cities. Follow Adam on Twitter. Read more of Adam's writing on the Packers here.

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---- Get AddToAny

39 Responses to “Donald Driver on Packers QB Aaron Rodgers: Blah, blah, blah, blah”

  1. JimR_in_DC says:

    Agreed. Driver thinks leaders take on the blame for others’ mistakes. I don’t buy it. On the other hand, I can’t see a leader being a finger pointer in public. That breaks down the trust and moral of a team. I can’t recall Rodgers ever pointing the finger at his teammates. In my opinion, Rodgers is a good leader.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 47 Thumb down 1

  2. Queball says:

    The full interview is a bit more telling and not quite as harsh of what he was trying to say but it does show a mentality I hadn’t expected from him. In the real world managers often take the heat off their teams by being a bullet proof vest for them, in public. But behind closed doors, you better own up to your own mistakes and fix them, I would classify in those meetings when you are doing tape as behind closed doors. Grown men handle their mistakes as well as their successes.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 0

    • Queball says:

      Rephrase, “Adults handle their mistakes as well as their successes.”

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 2

  3. packett says:

    I guess driver didn’t have many quarterbacks to compare. Imagine Brady or P Manning reaction if a receiver ran a wrong route. Yeh, I have to think DD comment wasn’t meant quite like it came out. If he does really believe a sport team leader should just cover over mistakes….then maybe he took too many head hits during his career. Otherwise, he had always been a classy player. Hope the comments stop.

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  4. packett says:

    Oh…and imagine Cutler calling DD out on camera shot, with arm gestures on the way to the huddle. And after the huddle, one more head shake.

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  5. Chad Toporski Chad Toporski says:

    I am so over this drama.

    While it was the players in the beginning that started everything, it’s the media that is keeping it rolling. Why do they insist on asking these petty questions and pursuing this issue every chance they get? Find something else to talk about.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 0

    • Adam Czech says:

      The media asks because dummies like me post about it and other dummies like me keep talking about it.

      This post has been online for like an hour and already has seven comments. My post yesterday on Matthew Mulligan has been up for over 24 hours and only has like 10 comments.

      People love the drama, even if they say they don’t. Unfortunately, I also fall into that category.

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  6. Adam Czech says:

    Part of me was hesitant to post this because I hate jumping all over guys for one quote, which may or may not have come out as intended.

    But this specific quote was just so….dumb. I hope Driver just phrased it wrong and it’s not actually what he thinks.

    Criticizing Rodgers’ leadership is fine. But you should at least have a basic understanding of what leadership is before doing so.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 3

  7. Tarynfor12 Tarynfor12 says:

    Donald…’DWTS’ lost your phone number..please call them.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  8. Rymetyme81 says:

    I hate to bring Favre into this, but he is the only QB besides Rodgers that Jennings and Driver have played with extensively. Rodgers has a perfectionist mentality, Favre does not, and apparently it was a difficult adjustment for the star receivers.

    I’m not disparaging Favre, but he threw a LOT of INTs. Do you think he could still hold credibility with his WRs if he threw 3-4 picks in a game and then got ticked at them for making mistakes?

    Rodgers makes mistakes, too but rarely are they drive-killers. Anyone who listens to his radio show with Jason Wilde knows he holds himself accountable. MM agrees. Enough said.

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    • Dudejcb says:

      I recall several times when Favre corrected guys following the play when they ran the wrong route, or stopped running the route…which often lead to an INT.

      Isn’t that what team mates do?…help one another to be onthe same page.

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      • Shavager says:

        Yeah,we all remember that playoff game against the Eagles back in ’03 when Favre threw INT that ended drive and gave Eagles opportunity for winning FG. Javon Walker broke off his route and ran wrong way on pass play Sherman called and Favre threw, the ball was in the air when Walker broke to middle instead leaving only Eagles defenders around. Walker had scored against Raiders earlier in season on the same play. Surprised to hear Driver would be a player to make comments like this, Jennings is angry Pack wouldn’t hand out big money to him.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  9. Since '61 says:

    If this is all we have to cover during the Packer’s training camp I guess the team is in pretty good shape.
    Thanks, Since ’61

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  10. aaronqb says:

    Though not as rocky as the Favre or Jennings situations, I was not crazy about Driver’s attitude over the past year or so. TT gave him a gift by giving him a 2-year contract extension in 2010 and his response is that he wants to play beyond his contract, then TT puts him on the 2012 roster even though he clearly should have been released and he brings attention to himself about lack of playing time.

    Now this.

    I’ve lost a lot of respect for DD.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 6

  11. Savage57 says:

    Just another sad story from disenfranchised former players. When did these guys lose touch with the proposition “I got your back”.

    Seems these days it’s more like “I got a knife for your back”.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 4

  12. lambeauleaper says:

    I too have lost a lot of respect for Driver.He should just keep his mouth shut,except for Dancing with the Stars questions!

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 9 Thumb down 5

  13. Sanguinius says:

    I think Driver went on Mike and Mike with good intentions to try and bring an end to the feud between Jennings and Rodgers but in reality he ended up making it worse.

    Some really bizarre comments from Driver, in particular the main crux of his argument about the QB taking some of the blame for others mistakes.

    If I was a wide receiver and I ran the wrong routes I would expect to get chewed out by the QB. It would be my mistake and I would have to hold my hands up for it. Why would I want the QB to take the blame for my mistake like Driver said? Bizarre comments.

    I don’t have an issue with Rodgers or anything to do with his personality or leadership. Whatever it is that comprises of his personality makeup is what drives him and therefore the Packers to be successful.

    With one Super Bowl Championship and potential GOAT stats the guy backs it up on the field.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 22 Thumb down 1

  14. Mojo says:

    ARods make yourself accountable style helped DD and Jennings collect SB rings. And isn’t that what it’s supposed to be about?

    Imagine if on that 3rd and ten in the 4th Q of the SB the two(Rodgers & Jennings) weren’t on the same page. The completion doesn’t happen and Pittsburgh is in a great position to win the game. That shows what precise route running and execution can do.

    I always had a strong feeling DD, Jennings and Finley were the players Shannon Sharpe was referring to last year. I think most of Finley’s gripes come from his own perspective, while DD and Jennings were established vets who probably verified and supported each others viewpoint on Rodgers. I wonder how many time DD and Jennings privately snickered at Rodgers “sensitivity” or scholarly route running demands.

    DD’s declaration that he’s a legend in GB is a little creepy. I know he’s said in the past how much he is loved and admired by the fans. Aren’t the fans the ones who are supposed to say that? Ego anyone?

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 3

    • Nick Perry says:

      What’s funny about adoration and love is how quickly they forget and stick their foot in mouth. Driver was a Farve guy, plain and simple. He had just a few good years with Rodgers, he had like 6 or 7 very good years with Farve. Clearly Driver forgets plays like the NFC Championship in Lambeau where Farve threw it directly to Webster in OT. If Rodgers had a defense like he had in 2010 every year he’d have won 2 SB for sure.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  15. lebowski says:

    I wish these assholes would just take their ball and go home

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 7 Thumb down 7

  16. NYPACKER says:

    My guess is that when he realizes that he has lost some “fan love” over this DD will backpedal faster than Reavis in coverage!

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  17. Jj says:

    Players did not start this mess. It was a single player, Greg Jennings, who started this mess. People in GB think AR is God, GJ was Abraham, and DD was Noah. Noah can go build another Ark, Abraham can go sacrifice his career by palying with a crappy QB, and they both can let God get to work and focus on another Super Bowl for the Packers.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 8 Thumb down 5

  18. DuJuanaman says:

    I definitely agree with the comments about how ESPN has turned into TMZ… i cant even stand to watch it anymore, its all about the drama with little focus on actual sports

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    • Chad Toporski Chad Toporski says:

      Welcome to the 24-hour news stations, where quantity is more important than quality.

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  19. jt says:

    I think we kept DD and GJ for a couple of years too long. They’ve become grumpy old men with grudges.

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  20. FITZCORE1252 says:

    Love me some DD, but let’s not get it twisted… The guy’s not not a rocket surgeon.

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  21. the real russ letlow says:

    if nothing else, Driver’s statements verify that Jennings issues are without much merit. Covering for a WR who doesn’t know enough to run the correct route? I’m in Rodgers corner on this one.

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  22. Michael says:

    This all comes down to the little kid that got mad cause his buddy didn’t cover for him. Favre used to cover for his receivers, and Jennings expected Rodgers to do the same. But Rodgers holds his receivers accountable for THEIR mistakes.

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  23. dan says:

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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    • Adam Czech says:

      Read the post again, Mr. Dan. It’s got nothing to do w/ Rodgers’ leadership or Driver’s criticism of it. I don’t know if Rodgers is a good leader or not and I don’t care.

      The post is about a really off-base comment Driver made about leadership in general. I’m all for players being honest. If Driver thinks Rodgers isn’t a leader, fine, he should say so. Instead Driver gave some really weird definition of what being a leader is and lost all of his credibility on the subject.

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      • dan says:

        Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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  24. john says:

    I agree with one guy. what driver and Jennings say has no relevant anymore, their done and as for Jennings, he is really done.

    go show them Rodgers that you don’t need them and that is why neither one is a Packer any more.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  25. NorthStarr says:

    Charles Woodson weighs in:

    “I don’t understand where it’s all coming from. I think A-Rod would consider these guys his friends, so for stuff like this to be coming out about him now that the guys are gone, it’s got to be hurtful to him because what are they talking about, to question his leadership ability, his leadership skills? The guy is one of the best players in the NFL, and I think he does a great job as far as leading them into battle.”

    “I just think the best thing that A-Rod does, he’s been able to keep a lot of things from getting to him. The way he came in following a legend and handled those pressures, his ability to be a steady guy throughout that time and then going out and performing at the level he performed, that shows leadership. And he’s continued to get better. Every player should look at him and say, ‘Here’s a guy who’s really on top of the world, and he’s trying to get better. That’s what I think is so hard to understand about what they said.”

    “It might be a receiver thing.”

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