Transcript of Brett Favre's news conference before Wednesday's midday practice:
On what he did during the bye week…
I went home on Thursday and got back on Sunday. I didn't do much of anything ... yard work. It was pretty boring. Going home for three days is good, but you also see all the things that need to be done. You get stressed out. Then you come back to a non-stressful job [jokes]. That's simple.
On if it's better to get away during the bye week as opposed to practicing all week…
Last week was a good week as far as how it was structured. It's like "When does the bye week occur? When is it best?" I don't know if there is necessarily a right or wrong answer for that. We practiced early. We got done Wednesday. Guys had plenty of time to go home if they felt like it or do whatever. Some guys stayed here. It's all up to the individual.
Practicing all week I don't want to say would do more harm than good. I don't know of many people who would do that, would practice all week. We had a couple of good practices and concentrated more on things that we needed to improve on as opposed to getting ready for Cincinnati. It was a good week. We'll find out after this game if it was productive. All in all, all the bye weeks that I've been through, it went by without a hitch.
On if it's refreshing to play in a city where he is not the center of attention…
To be honest, I haven't really thought about it. The only time it comes up is when I'm asked about it. Our job, in general, is very difficult and demanding within this building, no different than the way it was in Green Bay. I don't know how many people there are in the area. I know it's a lot. Some people could care, some people could care less. Some people are Giants fans, some people are hockey fans, so on and so forth.
But what really matters is the people in this building. I've always put a lot of pressure on myself, as I should, as every player should. Quarterback carries a little bit more weight probably than other positions. It really hasn't been that much of a difference. I come over, I practice, watch film, study, go home, and do the same thing the next day. It hasn't been much of a difference for me.
On how he maintains a positive mindset after the big win over Arizona…
It's simple. You've got to try to keep the same mindset regardless of if you win or lose. It seems like that game was a month ago. One thing I've learned throughout my career, what you did last week, how good you were, how bad you were, really doesn't matter the following week. Once you kick it off, it's a new team, it's a new day, week to week changes, season to season changes, expectations obviously are different from one week to the next.
For us, for any team that I've been fortunate enough to play on, it's important to expect a lot of yourself but not get caught up. Eric [Mangini] and I have had this conversation several times, not to rest on what you've done in the past. For me coming here, for example, there was so much that you could look back to that I had done over my career and think that would be enough or is enough to carry this team.
Really what matters is how I play this year, how I carry myself as a leader and teammate. That's the only thing that matters, not how many touchdowns I've thrown in the past. It was a great game. Anytime you win, it's great. It has no bearing on how we play this week.
On if there is a downside to a victory like the one against the Cardinals…
Time will tell. Shouldn't be. It was a tougher win than maybe it started out to be. People see how good Arizona really is. You never know in this game. Arizona beat Miami very soundly. We beat Arizona. Arizona blows out Buffalo. San Diego beats us. Miami beats San Diego. Miami beats New England. We lose to New England. I can go on and on.
Game to game, it changes. It really doesn't matter. What matters is how we prepare this week. It'll be a difficult game regardless of what people may think. [The Bengals'] record is no indication of how good they are. They may play lights-out. If they do, they'll be difficult to beat. Time will tell.
On anything that happened prior to the Cardinals game to put him and WR Laveranues Coles in sync…
More or less what was occurring. People have asked me that question, "You guys seemed to be on the same page." More than anything, the time that we've spent together playing, first of all. In training camp we had two days of work together. It's not enough.
Several of the touchdowns I threw him the other day, he was not the primary read. It easily could have gone to someone else. The only play that was going to him was one that I asked him leaving the huddle. I called the play and I said, "What can you beat him on?" He said, "Just throw me a fade route." I threw him a fade route and he won. That makes it a little bit easier to come back to next time.
I know the guy is a playmaker. We all know that. Trying to get the ball to him is important. We have a lot of playmakers and that has shown in these first four games. Even when he's not the primary guy, he's going to make a lot of plays. He actually had another one [that was incomplete]. ... I've been playing a long time, and the half he had was very impressive and could have been off the charts. He just continues, each week, to get better and better, and our communication is much better.
I've had people ask me "Are you and Laveranues OK?" but not so much now. I don't know where there was ever a problem. Our communication has been great from day one. The fact that we've practiced and played together has made all the difference.
On RB Thomas Jones…
He's a heck of a running back. I'm glad I'm playing with him. I faced him a lot of years when he was with Chicago. He's an excellent running back — that goes without saying. One of the things that I'm very impressed with is his leadership and his character. You guys have been with him for a couple of years. He's a likable guy. He's an outspoken guy, but not in a negative way. He's always the one calling us up, breaking the team down. After a tough loss he's the first one to speak up in the locker room. Those are things that you can't coach.
The guy is a tremendous running back. There will be weeks where he gets 100 yards, there will be weeks where he gets 40. There will be weeks where I throw four touchdowns, there will be weeks where I might not throw any. I don't think it's a reflection of losing a little bit. "Thomas can't break the long run anymore, Thomas can't do this" — I don't think it has anything to do with that. I know it doesn't. Thomas can break one at any point.
We have to be able to, or any team for that matter, if they're going to put too many in the box, you're going to have to be able to throw the ball. If they drop back and play coverage, you have to run the ball. It's really as simple as that. Arizona gave us a lot of options throwing the ball. When you look at the San Diego game, we fell behind. We really couldn't run it. We had to throw it. He probably could have rushed to 150 yards in that game. We lost anyway, but we were in a position where we had to throw the ball.
A lot of our passes have been opened up by the running game. You don't have to rush for 100 before you can do a play action, and we've thrown two deep balls for touchdowns, one against Miami, one last week. The one last week, fourth-and-1. They were all up in there for the run. We just have to be able to take what the defense is giving us and be productive. Up to this point, we've done a pretty good job of that, but Thomas is heck of a running back.
On the meetings he has with the wide receivers…
It's pretty simple. We watch the practice tape. We'll do it today. We'll watch practice. First and foremost, and this goes for anyone, any team, any level of play, it's not so important you know what the other team is doing, it's more important to know what you're doing first. That's what we try to get accomplished.
How can we make our routes better? How can I make my read better? If we have a check, let's make sure we're all on the same page. We do that first. We talk through practice and say, "OK, do you like this play? Or do we think this has any play this week on Sunday? Or should we throw it out." Then we'll watch a little bit of Cincinnati. A lot of teams probably do that, but it's important to know what we're doing first, and then we're about who we're playing second.
A lot of times it gets reversed. We want to know what Cincinnati is doing as opposed to what are we doing. When we sit down and it's in a relaxed atmosphere and not one guy is talking, anyone can speak up if they have an idea. Like when LC told me, "Throw me a fade route." Sometimes we look way more into this game than we really should. You can draw up all the plays you want, but it really comes down to the individuals, and that's what we figure out in those meetings.
On if he is comfortable with the system…
It's a work in progress. It has gotten better, but to sit here and say that I'm as comfortable as I was in my last few years in Green Bay, I'd be lying. I'm working hard at it. I like the open dialogue and the way we're going about it. Anyone has an idea, we speak up. We talk about it. We're trying to keep it simple, but yet within the confines of this offense.
Schotty [OC Brian Schottenheimer] has been great working with me, and I hope he can say the same thing. I'm not trying to change his whole offense. I'm trying to be productive in this offense, but try to get the terminology out as quickly as possible. If there're checks to be made, do that, and roll with it. It's been pretty productive up to this point. It should continue to get better. As long as we stay healthy and stick with the plan, we'll be OK.
On what he thinks is going on in the winless Bengals' locker room…
I don't know for sure. It's not fair for me to say what's going on in that locker room. They've had some tough losses. They took the Giants down to the wire. They easily could have beat Dallas last week. And I know, probably, what Marvin [Lewis] is telling them, "Guys, you're better than our record indicates." And they are, they really are. We all look at that team and say, "It's just a matter of time that they explode." Trying to convince every one of those guys of that is always a difficult task.
No different than you start off 4-0, 5-0, 8-0, trying to maintain that, the tendency to be complacent. It's a difficult line to follow, whether you're winning or losing. It comes down to the type of character you have in the locker room, the type of leadership you have, guys jumping ship on you. I have no idea if that's happening. I doubt it would be. Marvin Lewis is not only a great coach but has great character, and trying to keep that together I know is very difficult.
They have some outstanding players. I assume that the character in that locker room is very good, then they're going to continue to play in games where they have a chance to win, and they probably will win their share. I hope it's not this week, obviously, but they're a play or two away in each one of these games from winning. That's all you have to point to, and if guys believe that, then they'll be fine.
On if the Jets introduced the wide receiver meetings to him…
I think they did that in the past. I don't want to make a big deal of it because it's not. They probably had quarterback/receiver meetings, tight ends come in a little bit later. They go over some run stuff.
On if he had similar meetings in Green Bay…
We started doing it about three or four years ago. You would think everyone would do it and that everyone has done it forever. Why not? I think quarterbacks should be in every meeting with receivers because you work hand in hand with them. That's like having the right guard and right tackle not in a meeting with the left guard and left tackle. They have to work in unison.
We started doing it several years ago in Green Bay, and it's more of a relaxed atmosphere, which I think is good sometimes because having a coach talk all the time, you tune guys in, you tune guys out. It happens everywhere. Here, having everyone involved, I think, is important.
On when the Jets instituted the quarterback-wideout meetings…
The start of the season.