NFL Scouting Combine has Colts Head Coach Jim Caldwell Excited about 2010
INDIANAPOLIS – As Jim Caldwell sees it, it's time to look to the future.
Caldwell, entering his second season as the Colts' head coach, has spent a bit of time since the Super Bowl XLIV loss to the New Orleans Saints three Sundays ago reviewing that game. He watched it a couple of times, he said, enough to evaluate and review.
But he said the past is past, and the time is now to look forward.
For Caldwell, that started recently and is continuing at this week's NFL Scouting Combine.
And that, he said, is the perfect place to start.
There's an energy with the college players auditioning for NFL teams that Caldwell said someone involved can't help but feel.
"I'm excited about the future," Caldwell said. The Combine continues at Lucas Oil Stadium in downtown Indianapolis through Tuesday, March 2.
"That's the thing about this time of year. You see it in these young guys that are out here, really trying to get themselves in the best possible position for the upcoming draft. Every single one of the coaches in this building also feels the same way.
"There's an energy level that's contagious."
Caldwell on Sunday discussed a variety of Colts-related issues, including what he said was the ongoing solidifying of the coaching staff.
Senior Offensive Line coach Howard Mudd, the line coach since 1998, retired following last season, but Caldwell said any changes on the rest of the staff have yet to be finalized.
"Not everything is solidified," he said. "We're still negotiating, still talking, still working some things out. Everybody knows Howard is going to retire, that's a given, so we have to make some adjustments there. But until we have it all ironed out, it wouldn't be very, very prudent of me to make any statements."
Of Senior Offensive Coordinator Tom Moore, the offensive coordinator since 1998, he said, "Tom's been great for us."
"I'm anticipating he's coming back," Caldwell said. "It's still up in the air. Because we played so late, our situation is a lot different than others, and we'll take that every year. Right now we're still in the stage of making certain we get guys in place."
Caldwell said while he has reviewed the 31-17 loss to New Orleans enough to evaluate the game, he said the time foring over the details of the loss has passed.
"That's behind us," Caldwell said. "You can rehash that thing a thousand times, or three-hundred fifty thousand times. That's how tough games are. When you lose, that's what you do. I'm through that. I'm looking ahead.
"All competitors do. You go through a situation where you have a tough loss, but there's a certain point in time you have to look forward. That's where we are at this point. Obviously it's 2010. It starts over right about now. . . .
"This is a brand new year. It's a new slate."
The Colts, a playoff team the past eight seasons, have won six of the past seven AFC South titles, and won the division this past season with a 14-2 record. That secured home-field advantage throughout the postseason. The Colts also extended their NFL record with a seventh consecutive season with 12 or more victories, also setting the league record for consecutive regular-season victories (23) and victories in a decade (115).
"You look at our regular season, we did what we had set out to do," Caldwell said. "We met all of our goals in the regular season. We won our division, we ended up securing home-field advantage throughout the playoffs and this was just a caveat, we had the best record in football. We met all of our goals. Then we won
our first game in the playoffs and won the AFC Championship, which was another of our goals.
"We only missed one. You look at all the things that were accomplished during the course of the season, there were some steps involved, our guys played extremely well, played hard – just didn't win the last game of the season.
"You look at it and count 'em up, I think things went along extremely well, when you meet all of your goals but one."
Also at the Combine this weekend:
• Among the most-attended interviews Sunday was that of Florida State safety Myron Rolle, who played three collegiate seasons before foregoing his senior season to accept a Rhodes Scholarship. He studied at Oxford University in England this past season and is entering the April 2010 NFL Draft. "I do want it," Rolle said of an NFL opportunity. "I want it as much as anybody who's out here right now. This is a very important time for me." Rolle, who plans to become a neurosurgeon, said "American football is not a very revered sport there (in England)," adding that when he attended the American Bowl at Wembley Stadium in London, the fans were wearing NFL jerseys, but cheering most loudly for punts. "They didn't understand why I was getting up at 6 a.m. to train," Rolle said.
• NFL Network Analyst Charley Casserly on the first round of the 2010 NFL Draft: "This is the best first round I've seen since 1983. In talking to general managers throughout the league, decision-makers. …I think this is the best first round I've seen going into a draft since 1983."