Driver reiterates retired status with Packers, discusses Rodgers-Jennings comments
GREEN BAY - Retired Packers wide receiver Donald Driver took time Thursday to discuss issues that made the 2013 offseason a more-than-eventful one for the team.
Driver discussed his own retirement, but also chimed in on the growing feud former teammate Greg Jennings has engaged in about Packers QB Aaron Rodgers since his move to the Minnesota Vikings.
The all-time leading receiver in Packers history discussed what he thought was Jennings' perspective when he made comments about Rodgers "no longer really about the team."
“We’ve always said that the quarterback is the one that needs to take the pressure off everyone else," said Driver on ESPN Radio.
"If a guy runs the wrong route, it’s easy for the quarterback to say, ‘Hey, I told him to run that route’ than for the guy to be like, ‘Well, I ran the wrong route.’ Sometimes you ask Aaron to take the pressure off the guys so we won’t look bad, but he didn’t want to do that. He felt like if you did something bad, you do it. But I think that’s the difference. You want that leadership, and I think sometimes you may not feel like you got it. You have to earn that respect at the end of the day, and I think that’s what Greg was probably referring to.”
Driver also responded to Jennings discussing the Packers allegedly "brainwashing" him into believing the Packers' operation was the league's best.
"Anywhere you go...it goes hand in hand. Every franchise you walk in, 'This is the best organization in the world," explained Driver.
When it came to Rodgers and Jennings healing their relationship, Driver said, "I didn't see anything during the season. I didn't see anything after the season...you just never know."
"You want a friend who's going to tell you the truth...whatever Greg and Aaron have against each other, it's going to get resolved. It's going to take time."
Driver's own perspective also comes from his own relationship with Rodgers and what motivates him.
"He's a nice guy...that's what you have to respect. I was able to experience everything he went through. When he first got drafted, he got a chip on his shoulder..that's the way the guy is. I've always told Aaron, 'Don't forget where you come from.' That's what he's learning. I'm not saying he's a bad guy. He's a great guy. We have a great relationship."
Driver later went on NFL Network and discussed how Rodgers has to take up a greater leadership role.
"He doesn't have me. He doesn't have Charles (Woodson) anymore," said Driver.
"He has to be a leader. So many guys look at him as being a team leader in that locker room, and he has to step up and be the leader that they need him to be."
Finally, Driver took to Twitter to contextualize his points.
Tweeps: Listen I can't believe people would think I'm talking about Aaron. Aaron is a great person and a good friend. He will tell you that— Donald Driver (@Donald_Driver80) August 15, 2013
I've always told him never forget where you came from. He knows that. But the issue is between him and Greg. I love them both. Great friends— Donald Driver (@Donald_Driver80) August 15, 2013
When it comes to Driver and the discussion of whether he might come back, he told both ESPN and the Green Bay Press-Gazette that it's not in his plans.
“The organization has moved on to younger players, and that’s a smart decision,”
"That was it for me. You kind of know when it's over, because I said I only wanted to play for one team," he further told ESPN.
"It was easy to go ahead and retire. I did it for the fans."
He then told NFL Network, "I put on some cleats last night for a charity event. That's as far as it's going."
Scroll through the media gallery above to see pictures and memories of Donald Driver's record-breaking career with the Green Bay Packers.