2016 #ColtsCamp Q&A: Peter King

Intro: Morning Morning Quarterback’s Peter King brought his training camp tour to Anderson University on Thursday to get a feel for the Indianapolis Colts’ upcoming season. He sat down with Colts.com for a Q&A about Indy’s 2015 season, Luck’s big contract and the Colts’ prospects moving forward.

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2016 #ColtsCamp Q&A: Jason La CanforaColts.com: What are you seeing from the Colts? Obviously last year there was so much going on — at the quarterback position, defensively you've got guys in and out. What are you seeing? What's the buzz around the Colts now?**

King:"To me, when I look at the Colts a year ago, the Colts were basically probably the darkhorse team to get to the Super Bowl. And since then, you know, the season was an abject disaster. I love the fact that Jimmy Irsay said, 'I really like my coach (Chuck Pagano), I really like my general manager (Ryan Grigson)…'"Colts.com:You don't see that very often anymore.King:"…You don't see patience. And I just think that's smart. In this offseason, the two decisions that I thought were the smartest were Oakland keeping Reggie McKenzie as general manager, and Indianapolis keeping, you know, this power structure in place. And look: I mean they changed, whatever, like nine assistant coaches or something like that. That's Chuck Pagano basically saying, 'Look, we're not — we understand that we have to make some changes. And we're going to make some changes; we are going to shake things up.' But as far as the ultimate authority on this team, in my opinion, when you look at an organization that has made the decision that Jimmy Irsay made, I think everybody was shocked to see that decision. But, I just think it was a really, really smart decision, because if you think you have a coach who can win late in January, and if you can see a way that that can still happen, you absolutely, unequivocally shouldn't fire him. And I think Irsay made the right call."Colts.com:Obviously the Luck contract generated a lot of talk. Until the next big-name quarterback signs a contract, that's going to be the richest deal in NFL history. … What did you get out of that deal, and for a guy like Luck, who his first three years in the league was such a sensation; last year, struggled and was injured. What did you get out of that contract?King:"I think more than anything else, when I look at that contract, I remember seeing the news of the contract, and I said, 'Man, I bet Andrew Luck's embarrassed.' Not embarrassed, because he would play this game for 100 bucks a game. He just, you know — he's one of those guys…"Colts.com:He's a gamer.

King:"…He just plays. But embarrassed because he will hate walking around with this (tag). He can't wait until whoever it is — Kirk Cousins, he doesn't care — gets this mantle of the highest-paid player in football, 'cause that draws the kind of attention to him that he detests. But the one other thing I was thinking of is that there's something about, if you know that a person is your quarterback — I don't care what kind of year he had last year. Aaron Rodgers had a lousy year last year, too. So if you're the Green Bay Packers and Aaron Rodgers was unsigned at the end of last year, would you have said, 'Ooh boy, I don't know. I don't know about that.' And obviously Rodgers has done more than Luck has…"Colts.com:But Luck's the Colts' guy.King:"…The point I'm making — Luck is so unequivocally, absolutely … whatever. If he throws 15 interceptions to start this year, to start the next game, Chuck Pagano's going to stand up and say, 'Hey, I'm not taking this guy out of the lineup. He's our quarterback for the next 10 years.' So I really wasn't all that surprised, and to me, I don't think it's particularly newsy. It just …"Colts.com:You knew it was going to get done.King:"… It was going to happen. It was always going to happen. So what? You know."Colts.com:Finally, just what are the prospects for the Colts this season? Arthur Jones, Henry Anderson up front are going to miss some games to begin the season, there's some question marks on defense, the offense could be pretty good if Luck can protect the ball and protect himself. What are your prospects for the Colts?King:"Well, I think in general, last year when I was here, I was thinking very seriously about picking them to win the Super Bowl. Really, what has changed massively? I mean, not a lot — some things have changed, but what really has changed hugely? Not a lot. I look at this team, and I basically say there's two or three things I like a lot about this team. No. 1: I don't think it was a great move a year ago to draft a receiver in the first round. This year, I thought it was a fabulous move to take an under-appreciated, franchise center for the next 10 years, and take him in the first round. If you even think of waiting, you know, into the second round, you're going to lose the guy. Ryan Kelly was a great pick; he wasn't a good pick — he was a great pick. And, to me, I think what it comes down to for this team is Luck's ability to adapt to a new offense, to new coaches, and then I think it comes down — a lot of this is going to come down to that secondary, in my opinion. I think they're going to have enough on the front seven, but I just — I'm not convinced that they're good enough in the secondary to hold up against the best quarterbacks in the league…"Colts.com:Well, there's plenty of leadership at the top in the Colts' secondary. Behind that, it's up in the air.King:** "…Yeah. You know, football's a young man's game. I just came from Green Bay. There's going to be times this year where they will play two cornerbacks in tandem who were their first two picks in the 2015 Draft — one was, in part, a safety in college (Damarious Randall), and the other played one year at Miami of Ohio (Quinten Rollins). So you can't be afraid to play young guys and unproven guys. So I'm in no way saying that the (Colts) did the wrong thing; I'm just saying that I'm unconvinced that the secondary is going to be good enough to hold up against some of the better quarterbacks in the AFC."

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