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John Mercure: Mercurey Rising

Donald Driver in the House

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ERIK BILSTAD, JOHN MERCURE, DONALD DRIVER, JEFF FALCONIO

Wisconsin's Afternoon News is almost two years old. And for the entire run Packers wide receiver Donald Driver has been part of the show.  During football season Donald is with us every Tuesday.

Today he was in the studio for the show. What a great guy.

Here is a podcast of our show.

Driver was in Milwaukee doing some charity work and swung by the station. Her said he left the house in Green Bay at 4am.  He won't get back home until about 6pm.  These guys have only one day off each week, Tuesday.  It's a tribute to Donald that he spends much of that free time helping others. He is involved with Goodwill charities and the United Way. His foundation makes a difference in the lives of many families in each year.

Donald walked into the studio wearing a smooth light grey suit and a big smile.  He was gracious and unassuming.  He was warm and friendly with everyone.  When you're Donald Driver, I imagine everywhere you show up everyone wants a piece of you. Here at the station there were lines for photos and handshakes. He had time for everyone. He sat between Jeff Falconio and I and while Erik Bilstad ran the board.  We had a blast.

Driver  is the Packers all time leader in receptions and yardage.  I think we all know his time as a Packers receiver is ticking down.  He has been to multiple pro bowls, he has a Super Bowl ring and has hauled in some of the biggest catches in Packers history.  I asked him if the lack of playing time was frustrating. 

"As a competitor it's tough. I want to be out there," Driver told me. "But I understand what's going on. Winning is the most important thing and we're winning, so I'm happy."

ERIK BILSTAD, JOHN MERCURE, DONALD DRIVER, JEFF FALCONIO, COURTNEY BIEBER, ARMEN SARYAN, NILSA TREMAINE

We were told ahead of time that once Driver got here, he wouldn't have much time. He had another meeting he had to get to. I'm sure he hung out longer than his handlers wanted.  There were hugs and more pictures.  He smiled through it all.  I'm fortunate that I get to meet a lot of famous people in my line of work.  I see a lot of fake smiles and gratuitous laughs. You know what I'm talking about, the guy that is shaking your hand, but looking right past you. 

Donald Driver is the complete opposite. He looks you in the eye and when he talks to you, you know he is actually there in the moment.  Donald Driver is the real deal.

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