GREEN BAY, Wis. — With Aaron Rodgers recovering from a broken collarbone and Seneca Wallace placed on injured reserve, it was the Green Bay Packers’ new starting quarterback, Scott Tolzien, who got all of the media attention in the locker room Wednesday. Cameras and reporters were several rows deep crowded around Tolzien’s locker to find out how the former Wisconsin Badgers QB is feeling as he heads into his first career NFL start Sunday on the road against the New York Giants.
Tolzien spent more than 15 minutes talking about how his life has changed in the past couple weeks, the type of advice he’s getting from Rodgers and much, much more.
Here are five question-and-answer highlights from the interview with Tolzien:
1. What kind of whirlwind has this been the past two weeks?
TOLZIEN: “It has been a wild couple weeks, but it’s part of the job, part of the business. The focus remains the same, though. It was the same whether I was practice squad in the locker room back there (in the auxiliary portion) or here. You really try to make the most of each day, they all count, whether it’s Week 9 of the season or 17th day of training camp, it really shouldn’t matter. Approach every day the same.”
2. How would you compare the type of quarterback you are now to the one that left the University of Wisconsin after the 2010 season?
TOLZIEN: “I’d like to think I’m a lot better now. There’s no substitute for experience. You just think about all the reps I’ve had since college up to this point. If you’re treating them the right way and you have the right approach, you should be getting better every day.”
3. Your teammates seem to have confidence in you. Where do you think that comes from?
TOLZIEN: “First and foremost is the quality of the guys as a whole that we have in this locker room. We have an optimistic mindset, and if guys are willing to pull together and tighten up and (it’s an) everyone’s-got each-other’s-back type of mentality. That’s huge for a new guy like myself coming in to have that support of your teammates, because that’s ultimately the thing that sticks out to you most, that’s most important to me, is that I have the respect of my teammates.”
4. What’s the best piece of advice Rodgers has given you?
TOLZIEN: “He’s been tremendous. Aaron, Seneca, Matt (Flynn), the coaches, they’ve all been a huge help. I really value the things they have to say because they’ve been there before. Seneca’s been there before, Aaron’s obviously been there before, and even Matt’s been in this situation before, so I do draw on them and respect and definitely take merit to their thoughts and opinions.”
5. Do you have to guard against trying to do too much on the field Sunday?
TOLZIEN: “Yeah for sure. As a quarterback, the first thing from youth football to high school, college and beyond, it’s still the same thing — you want to first and foremost take care of the football. And then secondly, you’re trying to in any way possible, move the chains. That’s the bottom line of what it comes down to.”