(Opening Statement) * *
"After having an opportunity to look at the film, I feel that we played well. I think from an offensive standpoint, we moved the ball, we were pretty efficient, had a lot of quality play from a number of people; not only our offensive line, (but) our backs, our wide receivers and quarterback did a great job, as well. It was a pretty solid effort by everyone. From the defensive standpoint, our defense did indeed start fast. They did a great job with their gap control, running to the football and keeping things under control early in the game. They did a great job in stopping the run, which was one of the things we stressed as a point of emphasis. They've done a great job of that the past couple of weeks. It allowed us get a pass rush going once we had a bit of a lead, and they had to change a little bit of their strategy. We had some guys that had some big days on defense, DE-Robert Mathis with three sacks and causing two fumbles, DE-Dwight (Freeney) with a sack and LB-Freddy Keiaho, also. We had a number of guys that did a nice job in terms of coverage and pass breakups and etc. It was a quality day on defense. Special teams, we were good and solid, I think. I don't know if we won the field position battle. I think their drive start average was a little bit better, their net punting was a little bit better. But I think, overall, we held our own. (We) didn't finish the game like we'd like to have finished it. We got a little sloppy there at the end, but overall, we think it was a good, solid performance. The other thing I want to make note of is, that oftentimes during the course of the week we talk about injuries and things of that nature. I know a lot of times I can be rather vague, but I think for good reason. I think Dwight Freeney is a case and point. With him, there was a prognosis that it was going to be a bit longer. I think I told you, 'Don't count him out.' There are a number of guys around here that just do a great job, in terms of rehab(ilitation). They have a good sense of their body. Most guys at this level are elite athletes, and they know their body extremely well. We kind of have the benefit of time. That's why oftentimes you'll see that I may not be real specific about some issues, dealing with injuries and things of that nature, because of the fact that things like this do indeed happen. And we hope they continue to happen, because he came in and certainly gave us a lift."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on how DE-Dwight Freeney felt after the game)
"He's in good shape. I have not heard of any problems. He'll be in this afternoon, so we'll get a little bit better look. I understand that he is doing well."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on OT-Charlie Johnson's injury)
"Not quite certain where he is with his injury. We're hoping he's going to be ok."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on who would play LT if OT-Charlie Johnson is unable to play)
"We'll see how they all are in terms of their health and physical abilities. I wouldn't want to etch that in stone today."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on if he could have imagined a better start to the season)
"As tough as this league is, as difficult a time you have winning games in this league, we always believe that we have a chance, there is no question about that. What we try and do is just look at one game at a time, and every ballgame we went into, yes, we certainly believe we had a chance to win. Just like anything else, you have to prove it week-in and week-out."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on if he likes how the team is playing)
"I do because they get better every week. That's the thing that we see. We practice better every week. I think we perform a little bit better every week. As long as we can keep doing that, I'm going to feel pretty good about where we're headed. That's the challenge, don't get complacent, don't get lethargic, and those things are the things we have to fight and keep our humility. I think we'll be ok."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on his thoughts on the team through the first four games)
"I think, first of all, we got off to a pretty fast start. Offensively, we were able to overcome a number of different setbacks that we've had throughout the first four games. Obviously, the first game we were pretty efficient, (but) didn't score the kind of points we'd like (and) turned the ball over in the red zone. But the next ballgame, we were very efficient. So, we got better. We got even better in the third game. So, that is one of the things that I think is visible, not only in terms of the numbers, which are tangible, but then also I think in terms of execution. Then, last week, I thought we did a nice job of preparing and then executing. That was one of the things that I thought was very important that we did and continue to improve (on). Obviously, we have been throwing the ball fairly well and catching it well. Our running game has been consistently improving, across the board. We've been pleased with that kind of progress, but we have to keep it going. From a defensive standpoint, I think it's quite evident that the first game we played pretty solid, and the second game we did not play well at all, but they took that as a challenge. Since that time I think we've had good, solid defensive play. Just like anything else, it's a work in progress. Every week presents a new challenge, but I think they've bought into what we're trying to get done. I think the effort is outstanding, in terms of getting to the ball. I think we're getting some good, enthusiastic play from a great majority of the guys that are out there on the field. In the first quarter, I feel good about where we are in terms of our kicking game. We need to continue to get some little things ironed out. We didn't win the field possession battle in this particular ballgame, but that's something that is important to us, so we have to keep working on that phase."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on the team having a lot of yards-after-catch so far this season)
"It's been good. The yards-after-catch is certainly quite evident. All the receivers and backs that catch the ball have been able to do something with it, once they have the ball in their hands. It's a team that will get north and south on you pretty quickly and find seams, and get that extra yard or two. I think that's important. It helps us sustain drives and get in position to score points."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on the team's blocking downfield)
"In terms of receivers blocking down the field, it's as good as we've had throughout the years, this first quarter. WR-Pierre (Garcon) is a very solid, hard-nosed blocker. (WR-Austin) Collie gets his nose in there. WR-Reggie ( Wayne) has always been a very fine blocker. Then when you mix TE-Dallas (Clark) and TE-Gijon (Robinson), when they get down the field, that corps does a pretty good job, even RB-Joseph (Addai). You probably remember the first game, RB-Donald Brown blocking down field and giving Reggie a chance to find a seam on one of our wide receiver screens. So, I think all across the board that's something that we've emphasized, and (Assistant Head Coach/Wide Receivers) Clyde Christensen and (Senior Offensive Coordinator) Tom (Moore) are getting that done, getting it across to those guys, and they're executing pretty well."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on some expected defensive starters missing and backups getting a lot of early season playing time)
"It kind of bodes well for us, but it's something that's been the case around here for along time, where we anticipate and expect anyone that goes in for someone that's injured to play well. We don't fret about the fact that they're missing, that the guy who is starting is not in place. We expect them to do the job. I think when you approach it with that attitude you're not going to have any panic from the rest of the team, saying, 'Oh, no. We don't have this or that person.' The other thing is that it shows some confidence in the person that is actually stepping in and who is expected to play well. Then when the starter does eventually return, we end up with some pretty good depth, particularly later on in the season when you're really out there playing for all the marbles toward the end of the year, November and December. When it really counts, we've generally had pretty good depth at that time of year because of that."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on LB-Jordan Senn re-signing with the team two weeks ago and making an impact in the last two games)
"He certainly knows our system well. I'm not certain we ever envisioned the number of plays that he's been playing lately, because there haven't been a lot of teams that have been using a lot of nickel against us and three-wides, etc. He plays in that package quite a bit for us. So, it allows for quite an extensive amount of playing time, but he is a guy that can handle it, and he has been doing well."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on LB-Jordan Senn not even being part of the nickel package last season)
"Situations are different every year. This is one of those years where he's been around long enough to get a sense of it and understands what he is supposed to do and does it well."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on TE-Dallas Clark coming into the NFL more known for his receiving skills than blocking skills)
"One of things, I think, when he first came it was probably more noted that his in-line or on the line of scrimmage blocking might not have been his forte at that point in time. He's always been a guy that gave you maximum effort down the field. (He) puts himself in great position to execute his blocks down the field. But on the line of scrimmage is where a lot of people were concerned about him initially, when he came out of college. The fact of the matter is, he's a very good blocker on the line of scrimmage, as well. He's a technician. Although, he may not be 280-pounds, he is a guy that certainly gets the job done. We have no reservations whatsoever about running the ball to his side. One of the things about him, you present him with a challenge, he is going to find a way to get it done. That's been a challenge for him since his arrival, and he's done nothing but improve in that area year-in and year-out."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on the Tennessee Titans)
"A very, very tough team. Year-in and year-out, we've had nothing but hard-nosed battles with them. There is no reason for us to expect anything different. When you look at the situation in this league, it's a very, very thin line between 2-2 and 4-0 and 0-4, just a bounce of a ball in some cases. If you look at us you very easily could see that if things didn't go quite the way they did, the first ballgame could have easily been a loss for us, as well as the game in Miami very easily could have been a loss for us. You're looking at a couple of different scenarios that go just a little awry, and it certainly has an effect on you. So, I think Tennessee is a team that you better not look at that record and think that you're getting a team hasn't a won game and doesn't know how to win, because they do. They have veterans, they're tough, they're hard-nosed, they have a great coaching staff and a great head coach. It's going to be a difficult task for us. It's always been tough for us going down there and playing in their stadium, and even here at home, as well."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on if he knows if DB-Bob Sanders will practice this week)
"I do not at this stage."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on the health of LB-Gary Brackett and DB-Kelvin Hayden)
"They're both getting better. I would anticipate that at some point in time today, we'll probably get an idea whether or not they're going to practice or not. I would anticipate we're going to get something out of them this week, but I'm not certain to what extent."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on a Colts victory possibly knocking the Titans completely out of the race for the Division title)
"I think it's way to early to even speculate on something like that. They're too good of a football team. We're going to have to do our job and going to have to play well. At this stage of the game, there is nobody eliminate from anything. It's still up for grabs."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on the possibility that Tennessee will put QB-Vince Young in for a Wildcat look)
"I always think that's a possibility. If we get a sense of that, we certainly will try and prepare for it. Those are two different styles, in terms of QB-Kerry (Collins) and Vince, but both are very capable guys. We'll just see how things progress during the course of the week."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on QB-Peyton Manning's start)
"You have to conclude that it is the best start he's ever had, in terms of the numbers. Overall, when you look at them he's had four 300 -yard games. That's unique. I can't recall what exactly his numbers were like the year he threw for 49 touchdowns, but that was a pretty good year too. He's had a number of great starts, and has played so well throughout the years. He's been on fire, obviously. I know he is going to continue to work to make sure that continues."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on the amount of knowledge of the offense the wide receivers have to possess just to get on the field and contribute)
"It's quite a bit of information because every one of them is interchangeable. It depends on the formation set. It depends on their location. They have to know every single phase of our route-tree, backside, frontside. TE-Dallas (Clark) for example, has to know his position on the line, in the slot and in the backfield, protections and routes, plus all the wide receiver routes, as well, because sometimes we put him outside as a wide receiver and so forth. There is a lot of information for them to be able to grasp and then function within that realm."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on the young wide receivers, WR-Austin Collie and WR-Pierre Garcon, being termed 'gym-rats')
"I think if you're really going to progress quickly in this offense, you have to spend time studying and really looking at the details of our system and also spending some time out on the field, some extra time. That's what it takes."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on if the team looks for players that are able to pick up things quickly)
"Certainly. That's a very important component. They have to be able to think and think quickly. How quickly they learn, how quickly they adjust, is very, very important within our scheme. You can imagine standing out there, flanked, and QB-Peyton (Manning) goes to a play and within a nanosecond you better know what to do and respond very, very quickly and be in the right place at the right time. So, that takes some studying and some experience, also."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on if their have been some missed assignments by the young receivers because they are still learning)
"There are always going to be some here and there, but not an inordinate amount."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on the substitution play in the first half where the Colts tried to run a play to get Seattle called for too many men on the field, but instead the Colts got a warning that they would be assessed a 15-yard penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct if they didn't give Seattle enough time to substitute again)
"The explanation was that, actually RB-Joseph (Addai) started to go out on the field and turned around and came back. So, the official on that side of the field, all he saw was someone coming off the field, thinking there indeed was a substitution, which there was not. The official who was spotting the ball, usually if you have a substitution he will stand over the ball and wait until both sides have an opportunity to matchup. In this particular case, he stepped away from the ball, which obviously allowed us to snap the ball if we wanted to, which we did. But the ruling was that they thought we had substituted initially, but once they realized that we didn't, even though we didn't, the rule states that you cannot simulate a substitution. You can imagine what that would do to a defense, if the defense has a nickel team standing on the sideline ready to go, you act like you're going to put your nickel receiver in, he runs back out and then they substitute, and you try to catch them with too many people on the field. It's really not allowed. So, what they told us is the next time that would happen they would end up penalizing us for an unsportsmanlike conduct, even though it was something that was unintentional on our part."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on being at Penn State while QB-Kerry Collins was there)
"Kerry is what you see today, a hard-working, conscientious guy. He was a star player coming out of Reading, Penn. He threw the ball extremely well. He had a big, strong arm, and he could move around. He had good mobility. I worked with him for an extended period of time there. You could see exactly where he is today and why because he was a pretty settled guy and a little bit older for his age, and certainly capable physically."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on his two QB star pupils matching up Sunday)
"We've seen him a few different places, and certainly seen him the last few years down in Tennessee. I think it will be a good matchup, two fine quarterbacks."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on the defense blitzing more)
"I think it's given us some balance. It's given us a little change just in terms of where we attack an offense. They can't always anticipate that it's going to be the same look. So, they have to do a little guess work to prepare for us. Some things catch them off-guard and some things have been pretty basic. I think the blend has given us some pretty good balance. It does give us an opportunity to bring a few more guys from time-to-time, yet we're still a fundamental and technique team and don't necessarily have to stunt to win. It's great to have in your package."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on the players being excited to blitz more)
"They've been playing with some energy and enthusiasm. I think it's like anything else, it's week-to-week. Obviously, things are always rosy when you're winning. We try to keep it real where we can as we look at what we're doing, and make certain that we continue to get better and address the issues that we have that we think are our problems."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on what will happen to the pink the players wore on Sunday for Breast Cancer Awareness)
"I think there is one more week that we're going to wear it. I think a number of the items are going to be signed by those that wore them, and they're going to use them as auction items to raise money for Breast Cancer Awareness."