HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On using the phrase 'Pick Up Your Bayonet') * *
"It's a different version of 'Next Man Up.' That's what it is in the context of. Oftentimes, due to injuries and things of that nature, we have individuals that have to step into a position, carry on and do the job just as effectively."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On what sets this season apart from other seasons for QB-Peyton Manning)
"He's been such a highly accomplished performer year in and year out. Just when you think you've seen his best, he improves upon it. This year is one of those in terms of when you look at his numbers and how he's been able to play consistently well over a long period of time. It's been remarkable. He keeps getting better. I think a lot of it has to do with his drive. He just has an innate sort of will to excel. He never gets bored with it. That, I think, it highly unusual."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On having a veteran backup QB going into the playoffs)
"Right now we are what we are. To teach our system to someone in that short period time would be rather difficult. All in all, we think we have a good young quarterback. He is learning and developing. Curtis (Painter) will come along. He has the tools. He just needs the experience."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On if there's a timeline for the return of K-Adam Vinatieri)
There really is none. He is still working. He has kicked a little bit for us. He's just not quite 100% yet. He continues to work and continues to kick. We'll just see how it goes from there. The biggest issue is how he (Vinatieri) feels physically. That's the thing we've based our decision on. Right now, he's not quite where we'd like to be or where he'd like to be as well. He keeps trending in a positive direction."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On how practice went and the injury status of DEs-Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis)
"It was a good practice. It was a competitive practice. We did a lot of offense versus defense kind of work. We had an opportunity to get a lot of speed work. We worked on our execution and timing. Dwight (Freeney and Robert (Mathis) were out there. We just want to get our groove going. Hopefully we can continue to do that the rest of the week. We don't look at this as a bye week. We look at it as a preparation week. That's important for us. We have a lot of work to do. We want to make certain we get that accomplished."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On the injury status of OT-Charlie Johnson)
"I'm not nervous. Charlie (Johnson) is doing fine. He'll come along and will be ready when it's time to play, Lord willing."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On what the team will work on this week)
"We have three opponents we could possibly play. Rather than dilute your practice with just focusing in on a couple of teams not knowing who you ultimately will play, we would rather get some good work in and concentrate on ourselves. We'll do a little bit more individual work. We'll work on our fundamentals and technique. Oftentimes, during the course of the season, as the regular season goes on, you scale back a bit on your individual work. We could work on that (individual work) a little bit more at length and get back to those fundamentals. We also do a little bit more competitive drills with our offensive starters versus our defensive starters. These starters-versus-starters drills are not necessarily from a scheme standpoint or what we are going to face. We just want to work on our execution and timing. Those things, I think, benefit you in the long run. We take a couple of areas we feel we may have been weak in. We concentrate on those areas and focus in to try and get some of the problems solved this week as well."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On TE-Dallas Clark and WR-Reggie Wayne and what makes them stand out as a tandem)
"When you look at the two of them, they are outstanding route-runners. They have a real good sense of their position. They use their bodies extremely well. They have what I call, 'outstanding special awareness'. They can find soft spots. They can run away from man coverage, and they have great hands. Both of them have made some spectacular catches around here through the years, even in our practice sessions. That's the thing I think makes them a bit unique. It makes it a bit difficult for teams to double Dallas (Clark) and Reggie (Wayne). Typically, one of those guys has an opportunity to go against one-on-one coverage. They've usually be able to take advantage of it."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On P-Pat McAfee and the job he has done this season)
"He (McAfee) has demonstrated he can punt the ball real well. He is also mature enough to handle other duties. He has been kicking the ball off well. He increased the number significantly in terms of touchbacks we had this year. That makes a huge difference. All in all, I think he's done a real nice job. We knew he could do it. He's fairly versatile in a number of areas."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On WR-Austin Collie and post-season national awards)
"We can't judge what others see or didn't see in one of our guys. We know the value that he adds to our team. He is outstanding and does a very, very nice job. Those things (awards) come and it's great when they do happen, but it still doesn't diminish what he was able to do for us throughout the year. He continues to get better and has a huge upside."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On his approach for post-season games and what he learned from Coach Joe Paterno about preparation)
"There's a difference between college and the professional ranks. In college we would take those days leading up to the post-season and focus in on our younger players. We used those days as a spring practice of sorts. The biggest thing was making sure the guys playing in the ballgame were fresh and well-rested and well-prepared. They needed to be mentally ready to go. His (Paterno) thing was he always wanted to fight boredom. He felt boredom was a huge enemy in preparation. He wanted to stay in the same rhythm and we believed that. Those things we gathered from him (Paterno), but there are other things we've done here as well from my experiences working with him."