Rodgers turns to Roddy White for fire

October, 4, 2011
10/04/11
6:11
PM ET
We’ve noted many times through the years how Atlanta wide receiver Roddy White has a tendency to offend -- sometimes intentionally and sometimes not -- others. The people of New Orleans know all about that.

Rodgers
Rodgers
White
White
Well, now, White’s getting accused of doing it again. But I’m going to defend White on this one because I think he’s getting called out by a guy who’s looking to make something out of nothing. Apparently, Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers is sort of like Carolina receiver Steve Smith, who looks for anything -- real or imagined -- to motivate himself. And maybe to motivate his teammates.

On his radio show, Rodgers talked about the upcoming game with the Falcons, which is a rematch of last season’s playoff game. The Packers came into the Georgia Dome and beat the Falcons 48-21.

"I’m expecting a crowd that’s into the game,’’ Rodgers said. “A defense that’s excited. It’s going to be a loud atmosphere, like it always is down there. We got after them pretty good last year in the playoffs. I know some of the comments that have been made this offseason have been border-line disrespectful about what happened in the game, but basically we went down there and beat them, and they were the No. 1 seed. I’m sure they’re upset about that.”

Rodgers didn’t mention White’s name specifically. But it wasn’t too hard to figure out what he was referring to because the Falcons universally have saluted the Packers for playing the better game that day, with one very slight exception.

In a television interview in September, White gave Rodgers the sliver of a perceived slight he apparently was looking for.

"We were a better team than those guys,’’ White said in the television interview. “We went out there, and we didn't perform at our highest level. We're a run-first team, you know, and we throw the ball second. So once we get behind like that, it's hard for us to catch up. That was a tough lesson learned, but it was a good lesson learned because we're more focused this year. I feel like we're a better team this year, and we'll be ready to get after those guys."

That’s it.

Pretty harmless in my opinion. Incredibly harmless if you’re talking about White, who has said a lot more controversial things in the past. If White wanted to take a swipe at the Packers, he could have done a lot better than that. But, hey, I guess Rodgers needs something to get him fired up.

Pat Yasinskas | email

ESPN Tampa Bay Buccaneers reporter

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