Mudd, Moore Thrilled to be Back as Assistant Coaches with Colts
INDIANAPOLIS – Howard Mudd and Tom Moore couldn't be more thrilled to be with the Colts again this season. That's the similarity between the two.
Here's the difference:
Moore said he doesn't know his future plans. Mudd said he knows exactly.
Moore, the Colts' Senior Offensive Coordinator who retired this past offseason before returning, said Friday morning he doesn't know how much longer he will coach while Mudd – who also retired before returning as Senior Offensive Line Coach – said this will be his last season.
"I think this is it," Mudd, 67, said Friday between a pair of 2009 Training Camp practices at the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology.
"I think so – in fact, I know if I don't I have a problem with Little Miss America – my wife."
Moore, 70, said he doesn't have nearly the specific timetable for leaving the NFL as Mudd. When asked if he would know when it was time to retire, he replied with a laugh.
Moore added, "Somebody will probably have to tell me and that's OK. I've always said I'll retire when no one will hire me. By the same token, I think you have to be realistic with yourself. You want to make sure that you can be an integral part. As I told people, 'I don't ever want to be one of those hanger ons.'
"I have too much pride for that."
Moore, who served as the Colts' offensive coordinator from 1998-2008, retired in the offseason because of issues over the NFL's pension plan, as did Mudd, who served as the Colts' offensive line coach during the same span. They returned with new titles, but Colts Head Coach Jim Caldwell said shortly before camp opened they will have the same responsibilities as before.
"It certainly has helped us," Caldwell said. "I don't want to understate that, because you don't find guys who have the experience they have. Over the years, they both have been a real calming force to our entire unit. Their expertise is invaluable."
While Mudd said he believed when he retired in May that he likely would stay retired, Moore smiled on Friday and said, "I'm always the eternal optimist."
"I was hoping" to return, Moore said. "It's a privilege. I feel very, very blessed. I've been blessed to have an opunity to work with the Colts. It's a tremendous feeling."
Moore also said, "The single best thing I can say is, 'It's great.' It's great for a lot of reasons. My greatest memories in football are with this team. To see this whole thing grow to what it's become – I'm blessed to work for the best owner in professional football, and of course, everything starts at the top: to work for Bill Polian, who's the absolute best and it's an opportunity to work for Jim Caldwell, who is excellent.
"We have a great organization, and I'm happy to be part of it."
Mudd expressed the same feeling – that he is grateful and excited to have one more season to do what he loves.
"It's great," Mudd said. "I love it. Somewhere, I must have been built to coach, because that's what I like doing. I'm thrilled doing what I do."
But while Mudd said he loves the game – and while he said he is dedicated fully to improving the offensive line and the Colts' 31st-ranked running offense, he has no doubt about his timetable.
"This is kind of I guess like my last trip around the world, or the last roundup – whatever that is," Mudd said. "I want to not enjoy it at the expense of doing what we're supposed to do at all, but I want to enjoy. We have some work to get done. We have to get the offensive line squared away. We want to get the running game squared away.
"We have some real reasons to get in there and get our jobs done, and I want to be a part of that."