This is an article from the Aug. 23, 2010 issue
PACKERS RUNNING BACK
Undrafted out of Notre Dame in 2005, Grant has become the workhorse of Green Bay's rushing attack, running for 1,253 yards and 11 TDs last season
Dan Patrick:Would you be up for doing Hard Knocks, Packers-style?
Ryan Grant: Yeah, I think we would. It'd be good for everybody to see how we roll.
DP:Who would be the player or coach you'd have to worry about [swearing a lot]?
RG: Ooh, I don't know if I should tell you that. We've got a couple of guys that you might want to look out for. Maybe [inside linebackers] Coach [Winston] Moss [laughs].
RG: Yeah. He's a [University of] Miami guy [laughs]. There's a couple of guys here and there, more with the defense than anything else. We've got a lot of characters.
DP:Aaron Rodgers isn't afraid to give an opinion. Is he ever afraid to give an opinion to you guys? Does he ever criticize you?
RG: I don't think he is. Part of being a leader is you've got to know when to criticize [and how to be] constructive. We hold each other to a high standard, and when someone is not getting it done, we have to step in. And he's done that before with a lot of people.
DP:Can you lobby for the ball in the huddle?
DP:O.K., I'm Aaron Rodgers in the huddle. How do you let me know you want the ball?
RG: There's a little trick for all running backs. After you break the huddle, you always let him know what route you're running. You know why you do that? Because that's the last thing he is thinking about.
DP:But couldn't Donald Driver do the same thing?
RG: But he's already in his position, he's already lined up. I'm right next to the quarterback. It helps.
DP:How often does Brett Favre come up in conversation?
DP:Yep. Exactly. But do you guys get that question even now?
RG: We get that every once in a while. The majority of the questions are, What do you think? And it's like, Listen, that's not part of our thoughts anymore. We were able to move on.
DP:The Ravens have seven guys [on defense] who weigh more than 300 pounds. Who's the best, fattest athlete in the NFL?
RG: I don't want to call anybody fat.
DP:O.K., then p-h-a-t.
RG: You know who hit me last year, who laid it on me pretty hard? Casey Hampton, from Pittsburgh.
RG: It didn't feel very good. It was one of those where as soon as I got the ball, he hit me and then just laid on me. So of course I had to [go back to the huddle and] yell at everybody on offense.
DP:What's the worst hit you ever took?
RG: I got hit one time by a safety who caught me kind of awkward. I'd broken another tackle and just couldn't get my pads down before he hit me. He caught me right in my stomach. I ended up throwing up.
DP:You threw up on the field?
RG: I crawled my butt off the field and threw up as soon as I got to the sideline. Never let the opponent see you do that.
• Calling Card
Announcer Dick Enberg, 75, who's already been honored by both the pro football and basketball halls of fame, is back to covering baseball as play-by-play man for his hometown Padres. He told me he believes any announcer who can call a baseball game—especially on radio—at a high level can call any sport. "There is less action, but there's also an opportunity to be able to ... appreciate and report the subtleties and nuances of the game," he said. "It's an announcer's game."
• Flop Sweat
Heat forward Chris Bosh insists he never considered going to Cleveland had LeBron James chosen to stay with the Cavs. Bosh says it was Pat Riley, and not James or Dwyane Wade, who persuaded him to sign with Miami. He also acknowledged what will be at stake next season: "We need to win a championship. It's not going to be easy, but if we don't achieve that I would think that everybody would feel like they had failed."
• Line of the week
Magic center Dwight Howard, who last week headlined an NBA promotional tour to India, on the highlight of his trip:
"Seeing tigers [in Bangalore]. I've always wanted to own my own. Just to see them a couple of inches away—it's amazing."
THE FINE PRINT: Don't feel bad for Dustin Johnson. PGA rules are clear. You cannot ground your club in a bunker. Or in the rear window of a Cadillac Escalade.
Now Hear This
Listen to the podcasts at danpatrick.com/interviews
1. Ray Lewis gets revved up for the regular season.
2. Jimmy Johnson talks about being a Survivor contestant.