ANDERSON –Following the first night practice of the 2012 training camp, the Colts had an off day from the practice field on Wednesday.
It was a day of rest and recovery for the Colts as their preseason opener is just days away with the St. Louis Rams heading to Lucas Oil Stadium on Sunday.
"I can't believe it's so close," quarterback Andrew Luck said of the opener. "I really haven't thought about it too much. I'm still in the practice-by-practice mentality, training camp mentality. But it'll be a lot of fun."
The Colts got a small taste of what Sunday will be like on Tuesday night practicing in front of the largest crowd they have seen all of training camp.
Working on many situational drills, Head Coach Chuck Pagano was pleased with what he saw from both units.
"There were a lot of good things on both sides of the ball and a lot of learning things," Pagano said after Tuesday's night practice. "A lot of things we can go back, look at the tape and they got a day off tomorrow. Then when they come back in, we're going in there and fixing the things we need to fix."
Even though the Colts have the put the pads on at practice for much of the past week, the first full contact will come this Sunday.
Thursday and Friday will be two-a-day practices, but Pagano said the most important thing to get accomplished over those two days will be getting their bodies ready for St. Louis.
"I want to get their legs back, number one. So, we'll continue to work on the situational stuff that we've got to work out," Pagano said. "We'll hit some of those crazy things on special teams, offense, and defense that can come up in a game so we're ready for any of the situations that you normally don't work on – the last play of the game, hands team, onside kickoff, taking a safety, making sure we're on point, on all those type of things."
The grind of two-a-days finally will cease on Friday, as the preseason opener will serve as a break and a chance to test everything they have absorbed this offseason.
For offensive tackle Winston Justice and many Colts players, the game against St. Louis also will be the first time they play as the home team in Lucas Oil Stadium.
"I'm looking forward to it. I want to see how we compete against someone else other than ourselves. I'm kind of excited to hit someone new. I feel like this group has a lot to prove, so I'm excited," Justice said.
Wednesday's Trivia Question: Twice in four games in 1995, the Colts erased 24-3 road third-quarter deficits for 27-24 overtime wins. The first came in overtime at New York on a 52-yard field goal. The second came in Miami on a 27-yard field goal. Who were the kickers in those respective games who booted Indianapolis to victory?
Answer: Against the New York Jets – Mike Cofer; against Miami – Cary Blanchard.