(opening comments) * *
"This is certainly a real exciting time for us right about now, particularly for me, going into my first camp as head football coach of the Indianapolis Colts. It's going to be a lot of fun. I thought that maybe I was just a little anxious and ready to get it going, but I can also sense that our players are as well. There are a lot of guys that have popped into town a little bit early that are also anticipating getting started on Sunday. We've just gone through a three-day workout with our rookies. We had an opportunity to get them reacquainted with our system in all three phases, offensively, defensively and our kicking game. They did a nice job of regurgitating that information back to us, and they've been doing a great job throughout the summer of getting in great shape as well as the rest of our team. We were certainly pleased with what we saw out there the last three days.
(I'm) looking forward to the opportunity to lead this franchise, particularly going into this fall. It is going to be a lot of fun, and I'm looking forward to leading a veteran squad that also has a lot of youth and a lot of promise. One of the things that has been really enjoyable over the last eight years that I have been here is the fact that we've had the opportunity to have our training camp down at Rose-Hulman in Terre Haute. That's been a real pleasure. It certainly gives us a great opportunity to develop our team and team building, and it's a quality atmosphere to do that. It is also a great atmosphere in terms of our fans. The community and the school have welcomed us with open arms. They do a great job in giving us the opportunity to get better. It also gives the fans a chance to have a real up-close and personal look at what we do. All of our practices are open down at camp, and the fans have an opportunity to get a little closer look and we certainly appreciate their support. Our PR department as well as our Community Relations department set up great venues, not only for our fans to get autographs from players, but then also the different fun zones and things of that nature that attract a lot of children that are interested in our team.
I want to give you a quick update on our staff. Tom Moore and Howard Mudd are back. Obviously, I think you realize, and I certainly want to make it public that Clyde Christensen and Pete Metzelaars did an outstanding job stepping in when Tom and Howard were away. Howard and Tom are both returning and doing the same job they've been doing over the years. Their titles are such that Tom is Senior Offensive Coordinator and Howard is Senior Offensive Line Coach. You'll probably ask about their duties. They are basically going to be doing the same thing they've been doing. The 'senior' tag is added because it gives a little latitude in case they want to delegate a few responsibilities which have been going on anyway throughout the years. Clyde and Pete are kind of in a position much like I was with (former head coach) Tony (Dungy). I got the tag assistant head coach and then associate head coach, where he would give me a few duties here and there to lighten his load somewhat, but also give me a little familiarity with the position. Tom and Howard will do such with Pete and Clyde. We are excited about that. Obviously, I think adding our experience back to its fullest is great. We have a very experienced and quality staff which we think is needed in this league. It's one (league) that presents a lot of challenges and the guys that we have have just an immense amount of experience in dealing with all types of looks and fronts and different things that you have to deal with week-in and week-out in this very complex game. We are excited to have them back.
The other thing I wanted to talk about before I opened it up for any questions is the PUP (Physically Unable to Perform). Let's discuss that very quickly so that you will know who will be available for us at the start of practice. Sam Giguere is going to be on PUP. Sam fractured his fibula earlier in the year, but he is making great progress, and we really anticipate that he'll come along here in the next couple of weeks. Marlin Jackson has been doing great. All of these guys I'm going to mention to you – it's probably going to sound like a broken record because they have been making such great, great progress – but Marlin is doing well, and we'll anticipate that he won't start necessarily with us at the opening of camp, but we expect him to keep moving along and that he'll join us very soon. Antonio Johnson had just a quick scope of a knee in the latter part of the summer, and we're moving him along slowly at a good pace, but he'll be fine as well. Charlie Johnson, with the shoulder, is healing. He is coming along well. Bob Sanders is the other one on the PUP list. Bob is making good progress. Bob feels good and is getting stronger everyday. We feel good about his progress. Adam Vinatieri as well (is PUP). As you well know Adam had hip surgery. He's been making great progress. Also, in the middle of the summer – probably not to far from when he had his hip operation – he had a knee scoped. So, he had his knee cleaned up a little bit, just got some loose things tightened up so he wouldn't have any problems. He is progressing nicely and looks like he is coming along at a great clip. We feel good about all the guys that are making good progress on our PUP list. The other thing I just want to hit upon is that we do have all of our draft picks signed, except for three at this point. Donald Brown has not signed yet, nor has Fili (Moala) or Austin Collie. But in all three cases, we do not anticipate any snags, and things have been progressing nicely in terms of the talks. We anticipate getting them there on time for the start of camp. A couple of names you maybe were surprised that weren't on the (PUP) list is Gary Brackett and Mike Hart. Both guys were able to rehab and do it well and are available to do some work for us starting on Monday."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On if DB-Bob Sanders' injury were from wear and tear)
"It's still from the surgery. He's coming along and making good progress. He's really looking good. He's working at it. He's been diligent about his rehab. We feel he'll be ready in a short period of time."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On any interest in QB-Michael Vick)
"Right now, obviously, we really love our quarterback situation. We're pretty solid. Mike Vick is a very fine football player. I'm certain he'll find a niche somewhere. At this particular time on this team, there is not a need."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On any discussions about WR-Marvin Harrison)
"We have not. He's a quality guy and a quality player. I would suspect at some point in time somebody will pick him up."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On the team being excited and being in charge for the first time)
"It's a bit of new territory to cover. We started in the spring, but going to training camp for the first time as a head coach is quite special. There are certainly a lot of duties and responsibilities that go along with it. The difference is the fact that it's going to be my first time directing an NFL team going into the first season. That's exciting. This game is a lot of fun. We are excited about the fact that we have the opportunity to lead a great squad of guys that are a veteran group that's been around and understand what winning is all about. I'm looking forward to setting the pace."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On making changes to camp)
"There are going to be some adjustments. There are things we have done over the years ever so slightly here and there maybe this year a little bit more of a certain type of practice. It's not an unimaginative replication of what we've done in the past. We have tweaked somewhat different things just in terms of how we practice and how we work. We hope that is going to benefit us. We also have done a lot of things right around here. We don't want to stray too far from our core values. Those are the things that have made us good. Those are the things that have made us very effective. We certainly don't want to get away from that."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On if he talked to Tony Dungy)
"I have. I talked to him on a number of occasions. He's doing well. I asked him the other day if he missed it. I wondered if he got that itch going into training camp. He said no. He didn't get that itch that he would normally have. He's busy and doing a lot of things and has been very active in the community."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On getting Tom Moore and Howard Mudd back)
"I certainly feel great. I felt great about what we were able to get accomplished this spring. Clyde (Christensen) and Pete (Metzelaars) did an excellent job. They kept things moving in the right direction. We improved. We got better. We felt good about that. Certainly we feel great right now with our full complement of coaches on hand."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On going away for training camp)
"It's a great atmosphere that is created in Terre Haute at Rose-Hulman. You can get a lot of cohesion amongst your team and coaching staff. It's a great atmosphere for team building. It's a great atmosphere to get them single-minded in terms of purpose. It gets them focused, and you don't have many distractions. We can control, to some extent when they go to bed. That's important because we can make sure they are well-rested. A lot of things we can control in that particular environment during the crucial time of getting our team ready to play. It's important to get in that type of atmosphere to get that done."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On the confidence of the 2009 rookie class)
"That's always been something that has been important to us is making certain our young guys get taught and taught well. The way our system is setup, we give them an opportunity to hear about offense, defense and special teams five times. They just heard it for the fourth time these last three days with the fifth time coming up here in training camp. We anticipate at some time to have some young guys play. A number of them through the years have had to step in and play well and play early. That could be the same situation this year at one position or another."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On if he expects the guys on the Physically Unable To Perform (PUP) list to be ready for the season)
"I do anticipate that, and I think they are working in that direction."