But despite the high praise, O'Driscoll assured Irish fans he would not be under-estimating his less experienced opposite number.
"He'll get the same respect I'd give to any opposing outside-centre," said O'Driscoll.
"He's obviously played well this year and it's flattering to hear some nice things, but you don't fall into that trap at the same time.
"He's the new blood, and he's going to try to go out and prove his own point.
"Reputations don't count for a huge amount; when you get out in Test Match rugby it's all about that moment."
Declan Kidney will be hoping O'Driscoll can be the star of the show at the Suncorp Stadium as Ireland bid to avoid a fifth straight defeat - his worst spell since taking over the coach reins from Eddie O'Sullivan.
In response to the recent hammering by the All Blacks Kidney has handed fly-half Jonathan Sexton and centre Paddy Wallace recalls.
In the pack Tony Buckley gets the nod ahead of John Hayes while there's a debut for Chris Henry at No. 8 with James Heaslip still banned.