Here is a link to the orig. article with more quotes:
Packers tight end Jermichael Finley talks a good game, as my latest column points out, but he also backs it up on the field. He has the potential to become one of the best tight ends in the NFL, if not the best.
Can there even be a question that the Packers should attempt to give Finley, who will become an unrestricted free agent following this season, a new contract?
Sure, some wonder if Finley can be content in the Packers offense, where Aaron Rodgers has a boatload of receiving options. But the matchup problems Finley creates simply give offensive mastermind Mike McCarthy even more ammunition, so why would you allow such a valuable weapon to get away?
Some wonder too whether Finley might allow fame and his impending fortune to get the best of him. There’s no way of knowing for sure, but Finley is driven to be the best tight end in football so we can only assume money won’t change him after he signs a big contract.
Finley also has been prone to injuries, which is another concern to consider. But the reward for keeping him far outweighs any injury risk.
Yes, the Packers won a Super Bowl without Finley, who was lost for the season in Week 5 last October. But General Manager Ted Thompson and McCarthy talk all the time about the constant need for improvement. Adding the Finley piece to the Packers’ offense for years to come has the potential to make this team dynamic and cause nightmares for opposing defensive coordinators.
Bottom line, the Packers need to lock up Finley long term, the sooner the better.
Of course, an added benefit to having Finley around is that he’s a media member’s dream. He always seems to have something interesting to say. Here are a some bonus quotes from his session with the media Tuesday in the locker room:
On his injured knee: “That’s nothing right now. It’s all about getting that chemistry of my team right now. The knee is a non-factor. I’m ready to go, ready to play.”
On if there are enough footballs to go around: “As long as we get the W, the ball thing, that’s a non-factor also. We’re going to get our balls. I think the receiving corps is going to be happy at the end.”
On the early struggles of the offense in training camp: “We’re not playing for a Super Bowl tomorrow, the next day or a week from now. We just trying to get in swing of things.”
On all the attention given to the Eagles and the national spotlight not being on the Packers: “I ain’t worrying about that. All I can say is Sept 8, all that talking with the Eagles, Saints, that will come to a halt, I guarantee you.”
On Eagles backup quarterback Vince Young nicknaming the Eagles the Dream Team: “It’s just talk, it’s on paper. VY is a backup. I don’t think he should be doing too much talking but at the same time it’s on paper.”
On if he plans to talk to President Obama during the White House visit: “Hopefully do a lot of it.”
On how hard it was to watch from the sidelines last year: “It was a bittersweet thing. I was (ticked) off mad, all of that. At the same time we won a Super Bowl. You can’t ask for more.”
On his No. 1 goal: “No. 1 goal is to get back there (to the Super Bowl), get a repeat, get that greatness back on the board. Get back on the board, succeed.”
On whether having so many good receivers could be a problem for the Packers: “It’s not a problem, as long as whoever’s getting the ball thrown to them is making plays. We’ve got tons and tons of weapons, we’ve got weapons off the shelf. We’ve got weapons on the shelf. So we got ammunition all over.”
On how many footballs are needed to keep everyone happy: “Whoever (Aaron Rodgers) throws the ball to, whoever gets the ball at that time, if he’s making plays, no reason to complain because as long as we’re getting Ws, everybody is satisfied.”
On if there could be any roadblocks to him re-signing with the Packers: “It’s a business. If they come at me with a long term, of course I’ll take it, but if they don’t I’m still going to play ball to my best.”
On whether he thinks about a new contract: “I don’t think about it daily or nothing like that. That’s just something that Ted’s got to deal with.”
On losing weight in the offseason: “I went into the offseason weighing 255, came out 240 so I’m feeling great. Strength is still there. I’m ready to go.”
On whether he can still block at a lower weight: “Can I still block, for sure. If the coaches put that in front of my face, and I got 50 blocks a game, I guess I’ve got to do it and just be beat up after the game.”
On what drives him: “What drives me, just being the best, man. Every aspect of my life I like to be the best at what I do. And that’s what drives me to wake up and do what I do, is to just be the best.”
On why he couldn’t stop using Twitter: “It was just, I like to give back to the fans. Tweeting is not a big deal, it ain’t like I’m tweeting out there while I’m running routes or whatnot. I’m tweeting while I’m just sitting down or my wife is driving. It’s just something to give back to my fans and keep ’em on point with what I’m doing.”
On whether he dwells on last year’s injury: “I haven’t even watched the play, and it’s something I don’t think about. That’s the past and I’m moving forward.”
On his physical condition: “This is the best shape I ever came in since I been in the league. I came in healthy, a little slimmer, faster and stronger. I can’t ask for more.”
On which NFL players he watches on film: “I pull up Gates, and Gonzalez of course. Wayne on outside. Wayne, the reason I put him up on the outside is because he’s got the best press coverage. He can beat the press coverage any way you want.”
On the Packers offense: “I think we got the deadliest offense in the league. We don’t get that much pub or whatnot, but at the same time we’re on paper right now. (We) still got to go on the field and do work.”
On how many receptions he would like to get this season: “If A-Rod throws me the ball, I’ll catch it. You see that yourself. If he throws me the ball 80 times I’m (going) to have 80 receptions. At the same time I can’t predict the future.”
On his relationship with Aaron Rodgers: “I just stay in his ear period, just to keep learning and keep progressing in my game. Aaron is a great quarterback, just an awesome quarterback. I think he’s the best in the league right now, at a young age.”
On what he has learned from Rodgers: “Really just about detailing, just detailing your work, detailing every aspect of your game, which he (does). You ain’t got no choice but to just learn off him.”
On helping the younger tight ends: “No, I ain’t a talkative guy. I just like to get out there and work and do my job to tell you the truth. It’s business and you’ve got to do what you can to get what you want.”
On whether he believes it’s not his job to help the other tight ends: “I ain’t saying it’s not my job to help them, but I’m in the playbook just like they need to be in the playbook. If they’ve got questions I’ll answer for them, but at the same time, it’s about that time for me to just take off.”
On what he is doing to improve: “Just being consistent, staying on board, detailing every aspect of your game, that’s what I’m working on. I’m working on more film work. I’m working on taking my film work to the field. It’s crazy how good I want to be and the level I want to play at.”