Kolb began studying Rodgers before he replaced Donovan McNabb as the starting quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles. He closely watched how Rodgers handled taking over for Brett Favre in Green Bay, took mental notes and prepared for his time.
"The big thing I pull from him is how he handled everything, the whole picture, that's with Brett leaving similar to me with Donovan," Kolb said Wednesday. "Also, it's taking over a good team. It's not like young guys who come in and they're doing a rebuilding thing. We both had good teams coming in, too, so success is demanded right off the bat, and it's no different here."
Rodgers had no reservations about sharing his thoughts with Kolb.
"I was just honored that he would seek my input-slash-advice, whatever he wanted," Rodgers said. "Definitely have been a fan of his since he got his opportunity, and being in a similar situation, he's definitely a guy I want to pull for 15 weeks out of the season. He's a very talented guy, so I think he's going to make the transition very smooth, as I think was witnessed in his two games last year when he threw for over 300 yards."
Rodgers, a first-round pick in 2005, sat three full seasons before he got his chance. Kolb, a second-round pick in 2007, also waited three years for his opportunity.
Both had big cleats to fill.
"I looked at the situation in Green Bay. He's done a phenomenal job taking over for an obvious legend," Eagles coach Andy Reid said of Rodgers. "I feel that way about Donovan, that Kevin is having the opportunity to take over for a legend. I looked at a lot of different situations. Most of all, I looked at Kevin and the way he handled things last year and, really, since he's been here.
"Aaron Rodgers is tremendous. I think he's one of the top quarterbacks in the NFL. All the quarterbacks are different. It's important that I sit there and spend the most time making sure I analyze Kevin, and that's what we did."
Rodgers didn't get any starts playing behind ironman Favre. But he filled in nicely when Favre was hurt during an important game at Dallas on Nov. 29, 2007. Rodgers completed 18 of 26 passes for 201 yards and a touchdown in a 37-27 loss.
"That was a game that had playoff implications on it, and when I put Aaron in the game, we didn't back off schematically," Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. "We stayed right on the call sheet. He did a heck of a job and gave us an opportunity almost to win the game. That was a very important day for our football team."
Kolb started two games last year after McNabb was hurt in the opener. He put up impressive numbers, becoming the first player in league history to throw for 300 yards in his first two starts.
"I think it helps that he's had an opportunity to prepare himself as a starter last year, and I think that will help him this year," Reid said
In Philly, many of the diehards were ready for a fresh start, and they've welcomed Kolb. Although McNabb is the best quarterback in franchise history, he didn't win a Super Bowl, and his personality rubbed some people the wrong way.
If Kolb struggles, he'll certainly hear plenty of criticism. He can draw from Rodgers' experience in Green Bay.
"I watched him when he got real tough when everybody was expecting him to say something," Kolb said. "I know that time will come for me, and he handled it with great poise, and that's what you have to do as a quarterback. You look now at where that's taken him."
Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press