ANDERSON –Greetings were exchanged all over the Anderson University campus on Wednesday as players and coaches gathered to begin the 2014 season.
Wednesday was reserved for move-in day, a conditioning test and team meetings before the practice field becomes the focal point on Thursday afternoon.
Here are three takeaways from the Colts move-in day on Wednesday:
Several Colts Cleared To Participate
The numbers involving Colts starters lost to injury in 2013 were beyond staggering.
So it makes sense that health was a popular topic on move-in day at Anderson University.
The three-a-days of rehab for
Wayne knows that even though he’s been cleared, he realizes the most important factor is being ready to go come September 7.
“I am ready to go. You can hear it from me, I am ready to go,” Wayne said after exiting his IndyCar that brought him to training camp.
“So we’ll just see from that point on. Hopefully everything stays the course and I’ll be out there (Thursday).”
Both running backs who missed nearly the entire 2013 season have been cleared to participate, too.
For Ballard, who has been dealing with some mental hurdles of ACL rehab, this is a welcomed sign.
“It’s a big step, but I feel like it’s a big step and a small step,” the Colts 2012 leading rusher said. “It’s a big step just because I’m cleared to do everything. But it’s a small step. I’ve still got another big step to take in terms of getting all my football skills back down.”
“I’m going to be out there (Thursday), but they’re going to try to control my volume and make sure I don’t get too sore.”
Pep Hamilton’s Offensive Outlook
The score first, run first, conundrum of Pep Hamilton’s offense has gotten a lot of attention this offseason.
No matter the description, the Colts second-year offensive coordinator feels very comfortable with the pieces assembled.
“When you look at the personnel we have available now, it’s going to give us an opportunity to put a lot more pressure on the defense in a lot of different ways with Reggie (Wayne), T.Y. (Hilton) and Hakeem (Nicks), having all three of our running backs out there with the ability to make plays as well as our tight ends. I’ve always loved having tight ends that can expose a defense and take advantage of the nonconventional matchups,” Hamilton said Wednesday.
Another hot topic surrounding the Colts offense has been whether or not a quicker pace is beneficial.
Luck continues to have plenty of responsibility as he overlooks a defense, but Hamilton admitted that he would like an ability to change speeds out of his offense.
“There was times when we probably spent a little too much time at the line of scrimmage,” Hamilton said. “So we have to do a better job at mixing and matching our tempos.”
A New Look
Fresh off a trip back to Germany, including watching his native land capture the 2014 World Cup, Bjoern Werner has brought a thick beard and a different mindset to his second NFL Training Camp.
Werner knows the opportunities will be there for him to make an impact with
Now, it’s up to the Colts 2013 first-round draft pick to take full advantage of those chances.
“I need to step up and just play better football than what I did last year,” Werner said on Wednesday morning.