INDIANAPOLIS — That's a wrap.
The Indianapolis Colts on Thursday held their third and final mandatory minicamp practice at the Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center, officially putting an end to the team's nine-plus-week offseason workout program.
For Frank Reich, the whirlwind experience of earning his first head coaching job in the NFL back in February, quickly assembling a staff and then working his way through the Scouting Combine, free agency, the NFL Draft and executing a successful offseason program is now, finally, winding down.
"First offseason in the books," Reich told reporters after Thursday's minicamp practice. "We had a plan to start and it really revolved around our players and what we want to accomplish on the field, getting the right players here and in the meeting rooms and on the field and (I) just appreciate the effort they've put in this whole offseason."
Reich said he had a few areas, specifically, he wanted to see develop during all three phases of the offseason workout program: learning the new playbooks and schemes, improving body composition and conditioning and then also starting the process of coming together as a team.
"It's still growing," Reich said, "but it was a really good start."
The key now — with the team embarking on six weeks off until reporting to training camp — is for the Colts players to return to the team on July 25 just as in-tuned to the playbook, as well as in their conditioning, as they were today.
Reich told his players to "get away" and "have some fun," but in such a critical time for the organization, "we can't afford to take a step back at this point."
"We've worked really hard for a couple months now," Reich continued. "We need to pick up right from this spot where we're at and build from there. The season gets on you real quick. We're playing a preseason game two weeks after we report back, when the vets come in. There can't be a readjusting or re-acclimating time. It's got to be pick up and go and a big part of that is physically, so be in shape."
But at this very juncture — taking into account the team is yet to fully practice in pads — Reich is encouraged by what he's seen all over the field.
"I really feel good about the group we have," Reich said. "The talent level, the character level, everything that we've done, the commitment — I feel very confident that we have the pieces here to really challenge week in and week out and do a lot of good things."