HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (opening comments) * *
"We did sign TE-Tom Santi to the practice squad, you may be aware of that. In doing so, we had to release TE-Colin Cloherty. The other thing is, and most of you have probably talked to DE-Dwight (Freeney) himself with his quadriceps strain, he is one of those day-to-day situations; he probably intimated that to you, as well. We are not quite certain how long it will take him, but he's always been a quick healer. There has been no change on Bob Sanders. He is getting better. We are increasing his activity, but he has not gotten out on the practice field, as of yet. WR-Anthony Gonzalez is moving along, (DB-Kelvin) Hayden is making progress, not quite certain, (on his return) he and (LB-Gary) Brackett are both day-to-day."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on being back home)
"We are. It has been a little while. We've had a pretty good stretch away from home, but it's always good to have an opportunity to come and play in front of your home fans."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on if WR-Pierre Garcon has made it in to QB-Peyton Manning's circle of trust)
"Peyton would probably have to answer that question for you, in talking about his circle of trust, but do I think he's becoming a little more comfortable with him, I do think so. It is a work in progress. It is one of those things, a lot of people have seen, and I think we've talked about it from time-to-time, that we thought we had two good, young receivers coming along and making real good strides, that you could see in practice before they had an opportunity to perform in games, and now you're starting to see a little bit of it. But the fact of the matter is, that's sort of the tip of the iceberg. All the work started way back when. Pierre, this is his second year. For Austin Collie, it started way back in the spring with intense sessions in a select group and work with Peyton on some one-on-one things and things of that nature. They are starting to bear some fruit from the hard work they've put in, but everyday and every week you have to go out and prove yourself over and over again, and today is no different for those young guys."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on if it is tougher coming from a Division-III school than a Division-I school)
"I don't think there is any question that there is a difference. There is a speed factor, but that's something oftentimes it takes a little awhile to get adjusted to. Pierre seems to have adjusted fairly well."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on going into every game thinking it will be close)
"That is correct. If you look at the numbers, they tell you that most games are going to be decided by 3-7 points. The situation typically ends in the fourth quarter, where you either have the ball and you're trying to drive it down the field to either tie it or win it with a touchdown or field goal, or the opposite exists, when you're on defense and you try to prevent them from scoring to either tie it up or win it. That's typically how a great majority of them end. The way ours ended the other night is highly unusual."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on being able to execute in those pressure moments)
"I think the way we practice has a lot to do with the mindset of our players and staff. I think over the years one of the interesting things is that if you walked into our facility on a Wednesday, you really couldn't tell if we won or lost (the previous game), because there is always the same intense preparation, regardless of the situation. I think that is a good thing. They look at every situation and know that we have a lot of work to do and don't take anything for granted and we've been able to perform pretty well as a result of it."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on the emergence of young players in the defensive backfield, particularly DB-Melvin Bullitt and DB-Jerraud Powers)
"Melvin, obviously began last year even, he had some opportunities to step in and play, and he played well. He always seemed to be a guy who always seemed to be around the football, consistently. He hits well, understands the system, can adapt and adjust on the run, and he continues to get better. This year is no different. He's carried the bulk of the workload and has continued to do things well. Jerraud Powers is a guy, as I've mentioned on several occasions, is a very mature individual. A bit unusual in that respect, since he really acts like someone who may be 30 years old as opposed to whatever age he is, 22 or 23. He's quite mature, and I think that helps him in terms of his preparation. He doesn't get flustered. He has a lot of poise, and he has a real good command of what we are doing from a schematic standpoint. We've been pleased with his progress, and he has to continue to get better."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on the defense being fatigued after the last two games)
"The only thing I can do is take a look at the end of ballgames and what we look like at that point in time. I think in both cases over the last couple of weeks, it has not been an undue amount of strain and stress on them, because they looked pretty fresh at the end of the game last week. I look for it in practice, to see if they tail off in the end and things of that nature, but we've been in pretty good shape. I think you have to attribute a lot of that to our strength and conditioning staff, Jon Torine and Rich Howell. They do a great job in that area."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on DE-Raheem Brock possibly seeing an increase in playing time)
"The nice thing about it, he's played so much for us around here that we anticipate he'll come in and play like he's always played. He's a rough, tough individual that certainly is active, and now he's probably going to get a little more playing time, which is good. Key(unta) Dawson will also rotate in there, so we'll have a pretty good three-man rotation going this weekend if Dwight (Freeney) cannot make it back."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on DE-Robert Mathis)
"I think he may not get talked about as much, in terms of the media and things of that nature, but I would bet that our opposition sees him and know what he can do and how much of a force he is for us. He is a very, very important guy. He has a lot of speed and ability, and he can create some havoc."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on if there is a need to address the team to not overlook Seattle after the last two games were played in primetime and the game after Seattle is back in primetime)
"That was probably the basis for a bit of my address to them today, just about that particular issue. We try to cover all bases we possibly can. I was reading something the other day, I wish I could remember who said it, it was attributed to something in the Scripture, but I kind of look at it as something a coach has to do it as well, and what a coach has to do is… It said, "We have to exalt men without inflating them. And humble men without debasing them." That's a delicate balancing act if you think about it. You certainly want them to feel good about themselves, but not to the point where they get overconfident. We certainly want them to be humble without having to tear them down, so I think that's a sign of maturity that our team has been able to handle and walk that tightrope. That's kind of my job, is to make them aware of pitfalls and things that can occur, and we talked about that a little bit. It was probably directed more so at some of our younger guys as opposed to our older guys, because our older guys understand. I wanted to enlighten some of the guys that haven't been around here to kind of set the tone for them."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on if he is aware of the current AFC South Division standings)
"We certainly are aware, there is no question about that, but I kind of like adding them up at the end. (We just need to) stay focused, because every week is so different. Every week is such a great challenge that if you don't stay focused and tend to your business, then you're going to find yourself in a world of hurt. So, we try and focus in on what we have to get done this week."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on-DB Jacob Lacey)
"He is a guy who we certainly think is ready. He's a talented individual that is gifted in terms of speed and quickness. The league presents some great challenges for him. Even in the second-to-last play of the game in Miami, he was back there defending on (WR-Ted) Ginn (Jr.), he's been in the thick of it. He's getting his feet wet. He's holding up okay, and don't be surprised if you don't see him get a little more action as time goes on."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on rookies and free agents getting a chance to contribute)
"One of the things that we talked about when we had our rookie mini-camp, I talked about that issue. On average, we have 12 of those guys helping us during the course of a season, last year there were 18 of them. So, every year is a little different. I'm talking about rookies and free agents. This year, we'll stack them up and add them up at the end and see how many guys participate, but generally, anyone that is here, who is apart of this team, usually plays a pretty big role."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on if they need more than a three-man rotation at DE)
"Well, we have some options. (DT) Eric Foster can play out there, and we put (LB) Philip Wheeler, I think you saw him at the end of the game last week. Phil can play a little end as well. We do have some options."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on rotating OG-Mike Pollak and OG-Kyle DeVan)
"We think he's earned it, DeVan. He has practiced well, and rather than make projections off of what happens in practice, we decided that we might want to see if he can do the same thing in ballgames. So, we created a little bit of a rotation to see how he does. He held up pretty well, and we'll probably do the same thing this week."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on why they decided to go to a rotation at OG)
"Mike has been getting better and doing well, Kyle has just earned it, let me just put it that way. So, we decided to put him in place. The other thing is there is nothing wrong with a little competition, either."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on RB-Edgerrin James coming back to Indianapolis)
"I know our fan base certainly appreciated what he did while he was here. I know it will be a great homecoming for him, in a sense. There are a lot of guys in the locker room that have a lot of love and respect for him, as do the coaches and everyone else in this organization. It will be great to see him. You all know and I know, what a great competitor he is, as well. So, when that whistles blows it'll be serious business if he's in the ballgame with the ball in his hand. He can still do some damage."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on trying to reign in WR-Pierre Garcon's aggression when it results in getting penalties)
"Certainly, I think that is just part of the maturity and understanding the situation. He's a tough, hard-nosed competitor, and he's a quiet guy, but when he gets on the field, he loves to mix it up, and sometimes you have to be able to control that. That's part of the business. Within this landscape, you have to be under control, you have to keep your poise. We don't believe in getting a lot of penalties, because they'll hurt you in the long run in a tight ballgame. So, we do have to have discussions with him on those things."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on having the talk with WR-Pierre Garcon, but not dampening his enthusiasm)
"We talk and say, 'Hey, listen, we are not trying to dampen your enthusiasm, your aggressiveness or anything of that nature, it's just the extracurricular is what we don't need.' So, we try to keep it in that vain, but yet, keep him just as fired up, just as hard-nosed and tough as he wants to be, but lets keep it within the rules."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (on if he pointed to the name on his jersey when he scored touchdowns like WR-Pierre Garcon did on his touchdown against Arizona)
"Back in those days, I don't know if they spent much money on names on the back of jerseys."