Packers Maven

QB Aaron Rodgers "We just had to play a lot better football in the second half."

Aaron Rodgers' postgame press conference.

(on the injury)

“Yeah it was painful. I got it checked out, was in some pain so he (Dr. McKenzie) wanted to do some further tests back in the locker room area. So we came back in, did some tests, felt like I couldn’t further injure it at the time, so doc and I agreed I could back and play.”

(on if he thought it was serious at the time it happened)

“It was painful, yeah.”

(on if he was in a brace or if it was wrapped up)

“I put a little sleeve on back in here, just that.”

(on how it feels now)

“It’s a little sore.”

(on if he can play through this the next few weeks)

“We just finished up. We haven’t had lengthy conversations yet about it, but I’m going to do some tests tomorrow. I felt like once I got back out there and the adrenaline was going that it loosened up a little bit, but then it tightened up there in the fourth quarter. I was walking up and down the sideline trying to keep it loose, but we’ll do tests tomorrow and I’ll give a better answer on Wednesday when I talk. But, as long as there’s no major issues then I’ll keep playing.”

(on the rarity of such a large comeback win)

“I’m really proud of our team. After it was decided I was going to come back I knew it might give us a little jolt. We just had to play a lot better football in the second half, and we did. We put together four scoring drives. The protection was really good and obviously being more of a statue back there I had to deal the ball on time and make sure we had guys getting open. I thought the protection was really good and guys made plays. Ty (Montgomery) made plays, Davante (Adams) made plays, Geronimo (Allison) made plays, Randall (Cobb) made plays and the line blocked well.”

(on the Geronimo Allison touchdown)

“Prince (Amukamara) had just come out of the game so I was thinking about taking a shot on the new corner to Davante (Adams), but the corner jumped outside and the protection was good. When I came back to it, it looked like Geronimo was in a good position and I put a ball in that area, and watching the replay back, he does a great job with his hands kind of chopping that arm off and making a contested catch. (That was a) big play for us.”

(on drawing from his experience of playing on an injured leg in the past)

“I’ve got to get the ball out. I can’t be moving around a whole lot back there. And we did a good job mixing things up in the second half with some of our quicker hitter stuff and actually some more vertical stuff too. Davante (Adams) was talking about the double move and we hit him on a big one on the left side that kind of got us going there.”

(on if the play selection was limited because of the injury)

“No, I just told him (coach McCarthy) I’ve got to be in the pistol or in the shotgun. I’m not going under center.”

(on whether the Cobb touchdown was because of their chemistry)

“Nothing’s easy in this business but the familiarity, him kind of stopping his route there, and once I kind of saw him put his foot in the ground and move it back to the left, I knew that was where the ball had to go.”

(on if there was a point in the game where he knew they were going to win)

“Walking out the second half. I realized I probably should jog. I was thinking about walking out from the tunnel all the way to the sideline, but I figured I might as well jog a little bit to let Doc McKenzie know that I could do that because I hadn’t done that yet back in the bowels of the stadium here. And when I got the ovation, at that point, I said we might as well win this thing.”

(on if he noticed any different defensive calls as the game tightened)

“They started bringing a little more pressure to the back, bringing (Bears linebacker Danny) Trevathan, which we adjusted to pretty good. They were trying to get (Khalil) Mack on the field obviously as many plays as possible, which we figured, but we countered and we wanted to slow him down a little bit. We let Bryan (Bulaga) get settled and he did and did a good job. (Akiem) Hicks is also a great pass rusher. We had some schemes there but it was kind of just holding on to your ‘you-know-what’ and trying to make a couple plays.”

(on what he attributes the slow start to and the importance of winning such a game)

“I don’t think it looked like a win for a good portion of that 60 minutes, but it’s important – division game, home game – and just a reminder to the squad that belief in each other is so very important to sustaining success, and I think feeding off the energy and the momentum.”

(on if the slow start tonight changes his mindset about playing more in the preseason)

“Not really. I just think it was execution. We had some decent things called and just didn’t execute very well. We were trying to get some stuff in the run game going early and it wasn’t working, and we had a couple plays where either Jimmy (Graham) and I weren’t on the same page or somebody else wasn’t on the same page, so we’ve just got to clean those things up. This will be a good film to watch. Obviously it’s always good when you’ve won but (we had) a lot of mistakes in the first half we can learn from.”

(on his thoughts when he got hurt and when he was riding off on the cart)

“I was in a lot of pain. The first thing when you’re in some pain is you want to get off the field. You want to walk off the field on your own, so I was trying to get up there and the more I put a little weight on my leg, it was definitely painful, so at that point I wanted to wait and let doc give it a quick check. We went under the famous blue tent and decided we needed to get some more testing done back up here. So I was thinking about what the best time would be to do that. We kind of jumped on the cart there, headed in, and once I realized I wasn’t going to injure it anymore if I went back out there and realized I could put a little bit of weight on it, I just figured the adrenaline would kick in. Playing behind Brett Favre for three years, you realize you’ve got to be tough to play this position. In that situation it’s about coming back out and leading, and if you can do it and deal with the pain, then you should be out there.”

(on if he knows for sure if it’s not a major injury)

“I think that’s why we want to get some extra tests. When you have that kind of pain on a knee that’s been operated on a couple times, we all wanted to make sure that it wasn’t super serious.”

(on what the injury is)

“I don’t know yet. I’ve got a lot of swelling so we’ll see.”

(on his statement in the on-field postgame interview)

“I’m planning on playing, yeah.”

(on the play to Cobb happening after the dropped interception)

“We have a little saying, ‘Drop a pick, give up a touchdown,’ but it usually happens when we’re on defense. Thankfully it happened the other way this time.”

(on what goes through his head when he sees a 20-point deficit)

“Seven times three. We’ve got to score three touchdowns (and) stop them three times. That’s legitimately what goes through my head. I was a little ticked off that we didn’t catch them with 12 (men on the field) there and kicked the field goal because I knew we still had to score three times. But, from that point forward, we outscored them 21-3, so our defense did a great job and when we had to have them, (we got) a contested catch for a touchdown in space, a catch and run for a touchdown, and obviously the last one to Randall (Cobb) deserves ‘have to have’ circumstances, so I’m proud of the guys. I love Randall. He’s a great player, comes up with big plays, tough guy. It was fun to see him get the go-ahead touchdown.”

(on if they fed off the defense in the second half)

“They 100 percent kept us in the game. They were fantastic. They have gotten a bad rap at times, but I thought they played really well tonight. (They) gave up 16 points. You should win games when the defense is giving up 16 points in this league. I know they expect us score at least 17. I’m proud of them (Defensive coordinator) Mike Pettine is a phenomenal coach and we’re going to, I’m sure have some good film to look at, but when we had to have it tonight, we made plays.”

(on what this game means in the big picture)

“This is what we’re paid to do. We’re paid to deal with injuries and play through them. That’s what everybody’s doing and will be doing throughout this season. That’s the measure of a teammate, is what are you willing to put on the line for your team. To me it’s a no-brainer. Being out there is special. The ovation from the crowd lifts you up, gives you energy, the momentum of the game and you feel the tide turning, it’s special. This is definitely going to go down as one of my favorite memories, especially in this rivalry.”

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