(FootballStL) -- Steven Jackson will be facing his old Rams teammates on Sunday. Jackson, the Rams all time leading rusher, now wears the Atlanta Falcons uniform. He said on Wednesday that he has extra motivation for Sunday’s game.
“I’d be lying to say I don’t want to get the win, of course I want to get the win,” said Jackson. “But I have to come out there and just remain in the zone, in my focus and not get too up. When you allow emotions to take over, your wind becomes short, you’re not even thinking, you’re not on you’re A-game. So, I have to remind myself to stay in control, have the intensity that I normally play with, but dial-in and treat this game as if it’s one that I’m preparing and I have done over the years.”
Jackson rushed eleven times for 77 yards in the Falcons season opening loss to New Orleans. He’ll likely get a heavier workload against the Rams. Jackson has had to learn a new offense in Atlanta, but says he’s adapting well.
“It’s going good. I’ve kind of settled in, which is good. It was kind of a rough start at the beginning because the guys as an offense, they’ve been together for so long that when I was coming in trying to learn the offense, they were already operating in mid-season form, “ said Jackson. “It was actually quite different because over the years in St. Louis, typically we’ll be running the offense all together as a unit… as far as just one individual coming in and trying to get on board with everyone.”
Falcons Head Coach Mike Smith says he’s been impressed with everything he’s seen so far from his new running back. “Right from the very beginning, he got involved with our offseason program,” said Smith. “He’s got a great work ethic in terms of weight training, and working with our athletic performance staff. He’s fit in very well and he’s a guy that’s had a lot of success, some of our young players definitely look to him for leadership. I think his work ethic will attest to how much of a leader he is. I’m sure he was that way in St. Louis and he’s that way here.”
Jackson said he would have liked to play his entire career with the Rams, but understands the business of the game made that impossible. And he harbors no resentment to the way his exit was handled in St. Louis.
“There’s a few things definitely that I miss about St. Louis. One is being with my family. I still have family in the area. And two, outside of everything over the difficulty over the years, a lot of my teammates were actually the staff. The equipment, the training staff, the people upstairs in the front office, those people that didn’t turnover, those actually are the people that I miss. When I left, I knew I wouldn’t have that contact anymore, so although I’ve been able to stay in contact with my former teammates, it’s been hard not to be able to talk to some of the people in the building that I’ve seen over the years.”