SANTA CLARA – Ted Ginn Jr., who sprained his left ankle on a second-half kickoff against the Pittsburgh Steelers, spoke at his locker this morning. Here’s what he said.
Q: Do you think you’re going to play this Sunday against the Rams?
GINN JR.: I don’t know right now. I’ll leave it up to the players and the coaches.
Q: When you were warming up in Seattle did you think you had a chance of playing or were you just stretching?
GINN JR.: I’m not trying to really rush it.
Q: For you it’s all about the playoffs?
GINN JR.: I wouldn’t say that. It’s about the next game. Just kind of go day-by-day. I don’t want to think like that. I just want to take it day-by-day and hope that as the days go on I continue to heal.
Q: You injured your left ankle?
GINN JR.: Yeah.
Q: It wasn’t a high ankle sprain?
GINN JR.: No.
Q: What does this team need to get out of its last game?
GINN JR.: As far as offense, we just need that chemistry. We need to continue to go out and keeping putting it on the field and keep playing as one. Every time you get to go out and face somebody different than your own people, run plays, have success – it’s always great to go out and keep doing it.
Q: Is that something you need mentally before the playoffs – to get some time out there?
GINN JR.: Yeah, it’s always good to be on the field and active. You never want to be sitting on the sideline or out of the rotation. You always want to be there active for your teammates, for you brothers. Only thing I can do is take it day-by-day and continue to get healthy and give my input when I can.
Q: Who else has been working on punt returns besides you and Kyle Williams?
GINN JR.: We’ve got a handful of guys. I wouldn’t say that they do it every day, but through the course of the year we know who we can put back there and who not to. I guess. I don’t really know, I’m not the coach.
Q: Are you thinking about the Pro Bowl announcements tomorrow?
GINN JR.: I’m just thinking about having a great season, having a great record. Everything else that comes with it comes with it. Just continue to be a team and not individuals. If the Pro Bowl is something that stands out for me, it do. If not, I’m just happy to be a part of the success we’re having here.
Q: You have to be happy with how you’ve performed as a return man this year?
GINN JR.: I couldn’t do it without my other ten guys and my coaches and my team’s support. We just have to just continue to go out there and do it. I don’t see no big drop-off with Kyle back there. I seen some lanes, he hit them, got vertical and I think he did a pretty good job. Whoever else you put back there is going to be able to continue having success because it’s not a one-guy effort, it’s a team effort.
Q: Have you been a mentor to Kyle on kick returns?
GINN JR.: I tried to give him what I know, especially being with a guy like Bill Parcells – he was a punt return guru and he was on me. I just try to take some of the things I learned from him and try to explain them to a guy like Kyle. I see that it works a little bit.
Q: Frank Gore said that the difference in this team from previous teams is there’s no panic. Was there a point in this season when you felt this team getting to that point?
GINN JR.: It kind of feels like my college days at Ohio St. Everybody’s just for everybody. We’re just here for each other. We play for one another, we play for our coaches. Our coaches coach for one another and that’s all you can really ask. This year it’s not about who scores or who’s running the ball, it’s just about getting a ‘W.’ It’s just something that grows and comes with time. If you go through so many things as far as losing and being on losing teams, we try to change the culture and somehow we can change it by just being relentless and just being happy to have somebody next to you. I’m grateful to play with Frank Gore. Frank might be grateful to play with me. Take the little things that everyone can do and try to make them stand out. Forget who is who – just play for the jersey.