INDIANAPOLIS – The Colts first week of their offseason program will conclude on Thursday.
Wednesday provided a few interesting tidbits though as the locker room was open to the media for the first time in 2015.
Here is a locker room round up as the Colts are back to work to begin their eight-week offseason program:
Frank Gore on playing with Andrew Luck:
"He's running the show. When we are out there throwing the ball, he's telling us what to do and that's what I'm happy to see as a quarterback."
Bowen's Analysis: While Gore's presence is busy impacting a young Colts running back room, the veteran ball carrier is observing his new quarterback. Gore has been to a Super Bowl and after 10 NFL seasons, he knows the chances to relish in that environment again are dwindling. The combination of Luck and Gore gives the Colts a terrific chance of making it to the Bay Area in February. Luck's eyes lit up when asked about Gore, lamenting the "toughness' that the quarterback saw from watching plenty of 49ers games while at Stanford.**
Andre Johnson on if this is a hard transition coming over from Houston:**
"I wouldn't say it's hard. It's like a breath of fresh air. The past two years have been pretty frustrating. It's like a breath of fresh air for me."
Bowen's Analysis: The fresh air Johnson was referring to might as well be Andrew Luck's ball cutting through the air. Johnson said on Wednesday that he is definitely a fan of the ball Luck throws and thinks, after three days, the Colts quarterback is "probably" the best he's played with in 12 NFL seasons. Looking ahead to the schedule, Johnson has made it clear that the "revenge" factor of a return trip to Houston (10/8) isn't of importance to him. "I've got bigger goals than just playing the Texans," Johnson said.
Vick Ballard on when he thinks he will be back out their participating full time:
"Truth be told, I probably could participate now, but it's no rush."
Bowen's Analysis: Ballard was a popular man on Wednesday as the media tried to see how the running back was feeling after a second straight season-ending injury. He spoke with a bit of confidence on Wednesday, which should be a pleasant sound to Colts fans after the mental battle Ballard faced last year in rehabbing. The Achilles injury that Ballard is working back from had lingered since his rookie season, according to the fourth-year running back. Ballard was adamant that he will be full-go come Training Camp and getting his upper body strength back remains an off-season focus.Donte Moncrief on his mindset entering his second NFL season:
"I know it's time to step up. It's time to step up and make plays for this offense, special teams, it don't matter, whatever it takes to get on the field, I just got to get better and I feel like this year is the year. It's time to show the world what I can do."
Bowen's Analysis: Hearing a quote like this from Moncrief, you have to remind yourself that this is a 21-year-old-guy talking like he's in a major contract year. This is just how Moncrief is wired. His rookie year exceeded expectations. A pair of 100-yard games last season, in such a crowded receiver group, has set the bar for 2015. Moncrief is going to have a more expanded role this season and has the makeup of a true No. 1 receiver.Joe Reitz on the outlook for 2015:
"You feel a different level of excitement this year because everybody knows the potential that we have. It's our job now to work hard and earn it. Potential just means that you haven't done anything yet, right? You've got to go out, put in the time, work hard and earn it. And that's what we are doing now."
Bowen's Analysis: Reitz is part of a crowded Colts offensive line unit. What might seem congested during the spring and summer will inevitably play out with the Colts relying on up to 10 (or sometimes more) guys come regular season time. Last year, the Colts used 10 different offensive line starters, the most in the NFL. We are still a couple of weeks away from the players returning to the field for work but it will be noteworthy where guys are lining up.**