"I think everyone coming into this thing expects to go all the way, wants to go all the way to the finals -- and so I can't say that I was fully surprised that we were this far -- but I was pleasantly surprised at how we did," Warner told Good Morning America during a Wednesday morning interview with Trebunskaya.
The retired NFL quarterback said that while competing on Dancing with the Stars brought different challenges and difficulties than playing football, he was able to transfer some of his football skills from the gridiron to the ballroom.
"I think there's some things -- commitment to your craft, the willingness to work -- obviously footwork is a big part of athletics and playing football -- so I think all of those things lended themselves to picking up some of the dance moves, but there's still so much more than was very very uncomfortable that I had to learn along the way," Warner said.
Trebunskaya noted she had been partnered with several other professional athletes during prior Dancing with the Stars seasons and agreed with Warner's comments, but said she felt Warner also possessed an additional quality they generally lacked.
"The guys know how to work. They have the ethics, the focus, the determination, and the biggest challenge for most athletes -- and Kurt was an exception, I think, in my books -- is they're not really performers," Trebunskaya said.
She explained that Warner stood out from the other athletes she has worked with, in that he knew how to work the crowd.
"So they kind of go out there and don't really know how to externalize what they're feeling and perform in it. That wasn't the case with this guy, because he just went out there every single week, had a blast, made everybody enjoy it, and that's probably the most innovation out of everybody this season," Trebunskaya added.
Warner agreed he went on the show to have a good time, gain new experiences and learn something new.
"I don't think you really know coming in all that's going to go into it, and so for me, it was just embracing what it was all about -- the costumes, performing, having fun, understanding that you're not going to be a great dancer -- so it's just about enjoying the process," Warner said.