HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –placing Kevin Thomas on IR) * *
"Typically, at some point, you come to a conclusion after you have taken a look and exhausted all avenues. He is certainly an important part of our team, so he was able to go through the early part of training camp in terms of the learning process and things of that nature. In creating a little room in terms of where we are now with numbers it gets us to where we should be at this point and time."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –importance of Cincinnati game for return candidates)
"Where we are right now, there are a lot of guys that this is a big night for them, just in terms of competition, being able to make an assessment and evaluation of them. Certainly in the return game that would be true. (We) have another round of guys to have an opportunity to take a look. Devin Moore will be back there again. We may have an opportunity to sprinkle Brandon James in there a little bit more as well. There will be a few guys getting a look, but obviously this will be the final one."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –featuring a return guy)
"Not necessarily. It just kind of depends on opportunities. You don't always get as many opportunities in certain phases as you would like. We have to monitor that accordingly."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –Devin Moore as a kick or punt returner)
"It just depends. He is going to do both."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –front-runner in the return game)
"Not yet. We will wait until all of the evaluations are in throughout the entire process and take a look at it when we finish."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –if it hurt Devin Moore's chances by not playing last week)
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –returners all having their moments)
"I think it is one of those things where competition is good and healthy for everyone. Not all of them have been perfect, but nevertheless you can say both have been able to do some pretty good things that are able to catch your eye."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –still work to be done in preseason)
"For the most part we take this game into consideration and we are still trying to get better each and every week in all phases. This game in particular we are trying to make certain we get guys in the right position to do our evaluations and stay sharp, and we are still looking for execution, although there are a lot of things we are still working on. Timing in terms of just an overall system from an offensive standpoint, that is extremely important for us. Effectiveness, obviously, in terms of the running game. Defensively, just running to the ball and tackling. Both of those phases have to be continued to be worked upon. Then our kicking game as well, we still have to be a good, strong cover team, but we still have to make certain that we generate some return yardage as well. In some of those areas you can see some improvement, but we still are working to improve even more. That is a very, very important thing that is happening right now in terms of our team. Overall, we are just trying to find ways to get better."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –offensive progression with key players out)
"Well, it is not over up to this point. I think we can see some improvement in a lot of different areas. I think when you look at it you can see some incremental improvement in several different phases. We have never been accustomed to ever using injuries or anything like that as an excuse. Whoever is in there has to certainly play well and up to the standards we expect. Our culture is such that that is the way it is done and we live by it. I can just tell you that there are just some things we have done better. I think we have thrown the ball well. We have gotten off to fast starts, particularly in the last game. Defense has been one that we have improved upon missed tackles, but we still have to get better in that area. I think there are a lot of things we've improved upon. We still have a lot of work to do. I think that you can see in our return game there has been some improvement in that area despite the turnover on the punt return. When you look at it we have been able to gain some yardage. Kickoff return we have been able to gain some yardage. There are a lot of things I think you can point to and see some improvement, but we still have a long way to go."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –playing time in Thursday's game being like the past preseason games)
"I think that would be the common refrain. If you look at our history, don't expect anything to deviate from the norm in that regard. Sometimes it depends a lot on the health of your team and those kinds of things as well. You take a look at those and have to adjust accordingly. We will look at that closer to game time and make our adjustments."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –Peyton Manning's playing time)
"The best way I can tell you is to take a look at what we have done previously. It will be pretty close. At this stage right here today I could not give you any direct sort of answers and feel that I would be comfortable telling you who's playing and who's not playing until we get a little bit closer to game time."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –preseason being satisfactory or typical)
"It has been. Obviously we are still in it. It has been good up to this point. I don't think there has been anything out of the ordinary. Every year you are faced with real challenges. Sometimes it hits one position more than others, but that is not unusual. I think that is your typical training camp. As a matter of fact, I think those things serve to give you a little sense of what's going to happen during the season. What you have to do is embrace those challenges and difficulties and move forward. Like I have said time and time again, we have to find ways to emerge out of those situations stronger. I think that is they key."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –the rule of spotting the ball and the umpires being a work in progress, and have the Colts heard from the league)
"I have not heard anything at all. I know they have a Competition Committee meeting conference call today for tomorrow. From that I would suspect there would be a little bit of conversation and maybe somewhat of some closure. I think the final meeting is set for September 10 when they will talk about it a little bit more in detail and etch in stone I guess exactly what they anticipate is going to be the protocol for handling the new position. Also, making certain the teams can also operate at the speed at which they would like to operate consistently."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –having eight officials on Thursday)
"I have not looked at the officiating assignments. I know it is in on my desk, but I have not looked at it as of yet. I know that is a possibility. If you ask me anything other than that, that is all I know. Once I determine it is an eighth one, I will find out (where he will be located). They may have it listed on the information that they sent to us where he is located."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –Manning having enough preseason work)
"It has been the same thing we have done for a number of years now. In his 13th season, I think we have gotten a pretty good look at what he can do. I think the biggest thing is whether or not he has reached his state of readiness. I think he is getting close to that."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –injuries and guys being further along)
"I can tell you we are getting healthier. That would probably be the best way to state it."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –if Jeff Saturday or Charlie Johnson would be back practicing this week)
"I couldn't say a blanket statement across the board, but we are moving forward. That is probably the best I can tell you."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on –Gary Brackett's improvement)
"I think he is OK. He is sore as I think most guys would be, but I think he is doing OK."