A Rundown of Monday's Happenings at Training Camp
For players and coaches, football is a year-round job. Training camp is necessary for the team to prepare for the season, but players arrive to camp in tip-top shape and with a good grasp of the team's playbook so they can hit the ground running.
Fourth-year veteran wide receiver Anthony Gonzalez said he is a player ready for that work.
Gonzalez, who missed the 2009 season after suffering a knee injury in the first game of the season, not only spent the offseason rehabilitating, but also making sure the timing he and quarterback Peyton Manning developed over the last three seasons wasn't lost.
So Gonzalez traveled to Tennessee this summer to work with Manning to do just that.
"I don't think (timing) has been much of a problem actually, which kind of surprised me," Gonzalez said. "I feel pretty good about the work we've put in. One of the reasons why I went down to Tennessee this off-season was to get that timing back. I think having three days with him, myself and (Austin) Collie throwing routes and really working on that timing aspect really helped a lot."
Gonzalez, who says he did not feel 100% healthy until a few weeks ago, also pointed out that he already has played in 30 regular-season games and has 94 receptions.
"It's not like this is my rookie year. We have two-and-a-half years of experience to draw from, and obviously last year got cut very short for me. We weren't starting at Square One by any means," Gonzalez said.
And Gonzalez said it was important that he did not leave Indianapolis last season despite his injury. He stayed with the team, diligently working to stay prepared.
"I stayed involved. I was still in Indy even though I was hurt the whole year," Gonzalez said. "I was in the meetings. I was listening. I wasn't physically (able to play), but mentally I was. I think you can get around some of those issues if you stay mentally into it."
The receiver had career-highs with 57 receptions for 664 yards and four touchdowns in 2008, and he is hoping his nonstop work over the last year pays off big in 2010.
BILL POLIAN ON JOHN GILL
"With respect to John Gill, he's got a problem, clearly, that unfortunately many Americans are familiar with, either in their family or in the work place. So the number one priority for him is to get treatment, and we're in that process right now. Football is not a priority. It's not even a consideration. We're in discussion with the league office and they'll let us know what roster category is for him, but going into treatment as quickly as possible is being arranged with the appropriate people. We'll move on from there. We hope for John's sake that everything in the end will work out, but his focus now is on treatment and getting himself squared away. The program is confidential. It is, suffice to say, that we were very hopeful this would be a good year for him, but it hasn't turned out that way. So it's important that he get on with the business of getting his life straightened out."
PLAY OF THE DAY
In 9-on-7 work, Curtis Painter was under pressure, forcing him to step up in the pocket and throw a high pass to Brandon James as he broke across the field. The 5-7 rookie reached up in the air and snagged the ball as Melvin Bullitt and Terrail Lambert closed in on him from both sides. The 25-yard gain received a big roar from the crowd.
NOTE OF THE DAY
The Colts have owned or shared the lead in 112 of 136 weeks of the AFC South's existence.
"It's good. He's certainly an excited father. A brand new child, a young lady, and I know he's fired up about the experience. All you do is talk to him and you can see the gleam in his eyes. He's certainly glad he could spend a little time with her." – Caldwell on having OT-Ryan Diem back at practice after he missed Friday and Saturday last week for the birth of his first child.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
"We are making progress every day, and you can see it on the film. That's what training camp is for. You take it one day at a time and get better each and every day." – Donald Brown on the team's progress through one week of training camp.
"I didn't know what I was getting myself into last year after the (NFL) combine. Then it was just doing stuff on your own and not knowing what to expect. Coming in this year it was more of that college feel type of training of every day and every morning just trying to get yourself ready and in the best shape as possible. You get a lot of great athletes out here in the best shape of their life and you don't want to be lacking in that because guys will move ahead of you." – Jerraud Powers on feeling better prepared coming into this year's training camp.
The Colts held two practices on Monday. The first began at 8:30 a.m. and ran two hours. The second practice for special teams players only opened at 3:30 p.m. and ran one hour. Tuesday's schedule calls for two practices with the first beginning at 9:30 a.m. and the second one commencing at 3:30 p.m.
The weather in Anderson on Monday was sunny with a high of 94 degrees according to weather.com. Tuesday's forecast calls for possible isolated thunderstorms and a high of 90 degrees.