QUARTERBACK PEYTON MANNING (on gaining continuity with receivers) [
"Well, that's what we're continuing to form. This morning at eight o'clock I threw with Donald Brown and Austin Collie. I try to take two guys a day and have a little individual session with them. We just take three or four routes and try to master those routes instead of throwing one repetition of each route. We kind of master three or four of our most basic routes. That's what Marvin (Harrison) and Reggie ( Wayne) and I did for so many years and I'm just trying to do it with these young guys. But there's no question that you do notice that certain guys aren't here.
"I'll tell you what really hit me hard. Two weeks ago we had our big fundraiser for St. Vincent Children's Hospital, and we had a VIP reception in the locker room. We had the locker room dressed up like it would be on game day, everybody's name plates, everybody's uniform and jersey in there. It was really a neat thing for fans that don't get to see that behind-the-ropes scene. What hit me hard was that I got there first, and saw the lockers, and I saw Reggie Wayne's locker and I saw that blank locker right there next to it, which of course is No. 88 Marvin Harrison. But that kind of hit me, but some of those things will happen along the way here and remind you of the way things used to be. I don't know if you ever totally get over it, if you ever get use to it, but you do have to adjust and Coach Dungy always taught us that and Coach Caldwell is preaching that, especially during this time with some of the things that are going on right now."
QUARTERBACK PEYTON MANNING (on which offseason change has been the hardest for him)
"I think we're still in the middle of them right now and seeing how they are going to play out. I think everybody is getting to know Coach Caldwell. I feel like I know him as quarterbacks coach, but I'm getting to know him as a head coach. Every team meeting I'm sitting up in the front row, up right, with my pen and paper out. Everybody wants to make a good impression on the new coach. He told us in the first team meeting that he's 54 years old, Coach Dungy has a big influence on him, he's going to do some things the way Coach Dungy did them, a lot of things he's going to do his own way. That's how he feels is the right way to do it. So, everybody has to be prepared to adjust and certainly without Marvin here it will be a big adjustment. Whether it will be Anthony Gonzalez, Pierre Garcon or Austin Collie those guys have to step up. There are some open positions out there. Some guys are going to go out there and earn some spots."
QUARTERBACK PEYTON MANNING (on now knowing how the situation with Tom Moore and Howard Mudd is going to play out)
"I really can't tell you that I know what's going on. I will say that I don't think it's been the most properly communicated scenario around here. We have learned to deal with change and be prepared to adjust. It's still somewhat of an open book the last I've heard of it. The thing right now we work on is, during these individual sessions and individual drills, is working on my footwork and my quarterback skills. The next two weeks of team work we'll be working on our basic fundamental plays before training camp starts. That's what we're focused on right now. We'll see what happens once training camp rolls around."
QUARTERBACK PEYTON MANNING (on Moore and Mudd coming back as consultants)
"It's really hard for me to answer. I really don't know what the word 'consultant' means and I don't know if anybody does. I know Tom Moore always told me that consultant was kind of a scary word. All a consultant ever did was come in and second guess every play call that you made. However that plays out, I'm not ready to give you my closing remarks on Tom and Howard, let me say that much. Tom and I did have a meeting three weeks ago and it was somewhat of an emotional meeting, it was at 7 a.m., we were saying good bye, not knowing if it was official or not. But we took the time to share some personal thoughts, and that's hard to do in an hour meeting after 11 years of being together, a lot of meetings and a lot of private conversations in his office or at a timeout where Coach Dungy would be out there, Coach Moore and maybe (Jim) Sorgi would, and all of a sudden they kind of break away and it's that last little thing Tom tells me, there's that one little moment there. Howard and I somewhat of the same way. So, we'll see how that plays out toward the end here, but I think right now everybody is trying to focus on doing their individual job better up through mini-camp and the last OTA."
QUARTERBACK PEYTON MANNING (on the offensive system being in place for the most part)
"I would say that. We are always looking to tweak things and change things and see who is going to fit into the system. I wouldn't say I totally like the way it is right now. It's not normal not having a full coaching staff. I know we hired a couple of guys to come in but these guys are learning. They aren't offering a lot of coaching out there, I can assure you of that. It's not a situation that I'm just thrilled about and like I said, I think communication has been pretty poor in my opinion, but it's what we're dealing with. The hard work is what is going on right now and that's the most important thing and I think that's what will carry us through. It's good for Donald Brown and Austin Collie to see how hard (Anthony) Gonzalez works and see how hard (Joseph) Addai works and whoever it may be to really set the tone. This offseason work is a lot about players sort of setting the tempo and the coaches have always let the players set the tempo. That's what is going on right now.
QUARTERBACK PEYTON MANNING (on communication about Moore and Mudd's situation)
"I really don't know anymore than what you know. Somebody says one thing and then somebody else says another thing. I'm not sure everybody is completely on the same page in this building. So, I'm just trying to focus on playing quarterback well. These individual sessions that we have with these young receivers really pay off. I can remember last year having about two private 45-minute sessions with Gijon Robinson just working on some things. You don't know when it's going to come to fruition. I remember the Cincinnati game last year when all of the sudden he has eight catches and Dallas (Clark) is wondering what is going on, 'All these balls that use to come to me are going to Gijon.' I'm telling you I feel that work in the third week of May, and some of those things he and I talked about, and all of a sudden it gave him confidence and it gave me confidence to go to him. So, we hope those pay off for these young guys somewhere in the course of the season."
QUARTERBACK PEYTON MANNING (on the importance of Austin Collie, Pierre Garcon or Roy Hall establishing themselves as the third receiver)
"What I've told every one of those guys is that there is a receiver spot open right now. The plan if you had to say today would be, (Anthony) Gonzalez goes to the right, Reggie (Wayne) stays to the left, and that part I feel secure about. But there is a spot open there, either in the slot, or on third down, if Gonzalez or Reggie goes to the slot somebody comes in at that right or left. All three of those guys need to be saying, 'Hey, that's my job. That is my job to go win.' One thing that has always been proven around here, that Coach Caldwell will handle the same way, is that they will give you a chance to compete. It doesn't matter how old you are or how many years you've been here; if you win the job it is yours. That's healthy and that goes for a lot of spots on the other side of the ball as well. I think that competition will make us all better."
QUARTERBACK PEYTON MANNING (on his relationship with Clyde Christensen)
"I'm not 100% ready to go into that what-if scenario, because I just don't know, but I will say this about Clyde. Clyde and I spend a lot of time talking together during the week (over the years). He gives me great insight on the receivers and what they like, 'Hey, Reggie thinks he can get deep on an out-and-up or Marvin knows he can beat (the defensive back) on a post corner. Gonzalez feels better about this route.' And Clyde, for the most part the last few years, has been implementing our third-down package and our red-zone package, and I want to say, last year for sure, that we were No. 1 in both categories in third down and red-zone. Tom (Moore) has given him great flexibility and input or leeway, whatever the word is. Anytime Clyde has an idea Tom has let him offer that. It has been a healthy relationship. Clyde has been very instrumental on what we've done on offense and, no doubt, has had a huge impact on our receivers coaching them individually."
DEFENSIVE END DWIGHT FREENEY (on if it's a new defensive system or tweaks to the old one)
"I think it's a little bit of both. He (new defensive coordinator, Larry Coyer) definitely has new stuff; some very interesting things that help out a lot and are a lot different from last year. We also have a lot that is the same and I think, sometimes, change is a good thing. So, we'll see what happens."
DEFENSIVE END DWIGHT FREENEY (on what changes the defense might make)
"I think you'll probably see more movement and maybe some different coverages and fronts. Mostly doing some things just to tweak it up a bit and keep the offense on their toes."
DEFENSIVE END DWIGHT FREENEY (on how the team will react to change)
"Every year going into a new year there is always change. Even with the same coordinator there is going to be change, because you always have to improve from the year before. Obviously, we have a new coordinator this year and there's probably a little bit more change than what we're used too, but it might be a good thing. The same pieces are out there doing what we do."
DEFENSIVE END DWIGHT FREENEY (on if the changes mean that he could be dropping back into coverage)
"I don't think so, but if they do ask me (to) I'll be all right."
DEFENSIVE END DWIGHT FREENEY (on if he likes the changes to the defense)
"Yes, I like a lot of the changes. We'll see what happens. It's easy to say that now, but I have confidence that what we have now will work."
DEFENSIVE END DWIGHT FREENEY (on the return of DT-Ed Johnson)
"I love it. Ed is our guy. Not everybody does everything right all the time, and some people make mistakes. He understands the mistakes that he has made, and we are trying to give him a second chance. Ed has a lot of potential to be great. He's had some off-the-field issues and he's straightened those things out. He should be good."
DEFENSIVE END DWIGHT FREENEY (on the importance of being present for OTAs)
"I think it's very important for obvious reasons. We're learning a new style, but just to have the whole group together and trying to learn this thing together from the beginning. We get used to each other, he (defensive coordinator, Larry Coyer) can get used to me, and I can get used to him and the way he likes to coach."
DEFENSIVE END DWIGHT FREENEY (on being healthy and not having to rehab in the offseason)
"That was my big thing for this year, to be able to roll into the season without having a surgery. I can get all the pieces and all the body parts right, so I can be fine this year. It's a lot different from last year where I was trying to put something together for the year."
DEFENSIVE END DWIGHT FREENEY (on his foot)
"It feels pretty good. It's achy at times. I don't know if it's ever going to feel perfectly fine. When I wake up in the morning, I might feel a little ache but it's going to be pretty good."
"The rookies are in and we're checking them out and getting them accustomed, we've got some good players. Hopefully, they'll help us in the season. Right now, you're not seeing a lot more than running and lifting. Hopefully, in the next couple of weeks, we'll see them in some football scenarios and really see what they're about."
CENTER JEFF SATURDAY (on the absence of Howard Mudd)
We haven't really done anything yet. There hasn't been much dealing with Pete (Metzelaars) on the field. As far as players, we normally would be meeting with Pete anyways, so it hasn't been much different at this point anyways.
CENTER JEFF SATURDAY (on the team's coaching changes)
"I'll say this, I don't really know exactly what is going on, and so I probably will just defer (to Head Coach Jim Caldwell). I really don't know what the situation is with all the staff changes. I know we have a new defensive coordinator and a new special teams coach. But other than that, I dealt with Howard (Mudd) and Tom (Moore) in the pre-season stuff already, so while they've been gone for a few weeks, nothing has really changed for me up to this point."
CENTER JEFF SATURDAY (on whether there is a lack of finality with the coaching staff)
"Yeah, I would definitely say that. I don't know exactly what's going to happen or what it's going to like. I'm sure Jim (Caldwell) will make it very clear, but understand from our side, I would not be dealing with coaches right now anyways. I come in and lift, run, do stuff with the strength coaches, and I may spend 10 minutes with a coach talking about different things we're implementing. So it hasn't been anything different for me because it's just been normal business."
CENTER JEFF SATURDAY (on when the coaching changes come into play)
"Next week. Once we start our true coaching sessions when we're on the field with everybody doing team work, that's when I'd notice a difference, if any."
CENTER JEFF SATURDAY (on Pete Metzelaars)
"Pete's been here maybe four or five years, he's been here with me forever. I know he knows the offense as well as any staff member. He knows football. He played 15, maybe 16 years up in Buffalo and different places around the league. There is definitely not going to be any issue of him not knowing our offense or football, he's as good as they come. As far as him taking over and asserting that role as the guy you look to, that's the only thing that will be different. Over the last couple of years, when you come off the field, you talk to Pete, you talk to Howard (Mudd). He's up on the headset, so he's pretty much communicating with you year round. So there's not going to be a whole lot of difference as far as that goes."
CENTER JEFF SATURDAY (on the biggest difference between Tony Dungy and Jim Caldwell)
"To this point, he's probably more direct. When you sit down in meetings, he's more poignant to it. He says, 'Hey, this is how it's going to go, this is how I am.' He raises his voice. You can tell he gets agitated and can raise his voice and can get after you with the best of them. On the field, I don't know what his coaching style is going to be like. I don't know if he's going to change things. But off the field, he's a fantastic person. I have a ton of respect for him. He's been my quarterback's coach for years, and I've loved working with him. So hopefully things won't change too much."
CENTER JEFF SATURDAY (on the coaches' difference in philosophies)
"(Coach Caldwell) may be a little more aggressive in that he wants people to show up at a certain time. In workouts, he wants groups to start together. So I'm at 8:30 every morning, that's my group. I'm going to show up, I'm going to stretch with those guys. So probably a little more structured. He likes guys being the same, working together and getting that consistency. We probably have 10-15 guys every day that will be working at that time and he likes it to stay that way."
RUNNING BACK DONALD BROWN (on adapting to an NFL workload)
"I got a glimpse of it. I'm not new to hard work so I think I fit in quite well."
RUNNING BACK DONALD BROWN (on getting acclimated)
"Definitely, more acclimated with the team, the playbook, the city itself. It's been great so far. The veterans have pretty much welcomed us with open arms, so that's been great."
RUNNING BACK DONALD BROWN (on when the 'wow' factor of Peyton Manning wears off)
"It already did. He's my teammate now. He's one of the guys."
RUNNING BACK DONALD BROWN (on familiarizing himself with the playbook)
"It was tough at first grasping the concepts. But each day I'm getting more comfortable with it. As long as I don't make the same mistakes twice, I'll be alright."
RUNNING BACK DONALD BROWN (on the biggest challenge in the weeks ahead)
"Just learning the offense more and getting more familiar with my teammates."
RUNNING BACK DONALD BROWN (on the hardest thing to adjust to)
"Just the different atmosphere. You're at a different level now, new city, new people, that's been the biggest adjustment."
RUNNING BACK DONALD BROWN (on whether he's leaning on anyone to help learn the offense)
"All the guys have been helpful. All the running backs have been helpful, Peyton's been helpful, (Jim) Sorgi's been helpful. All the vets, they've been helping me out."
RUNNING BACK DONALD BROWN (on watching film)
"I've been in my playbook, watching film, just trying to learn the offense as quickly as possible."
RUNNING BACK DONALD BROWN (on whether Manning has given him any advice)
"Not really. I've worked out with him a couple of times and it's been great. He's so knowledgeable, he's like a coach out there. Whatever he says I just try and let it sink in."
TIGHT END DALLAS CLARK (on the team's coaching changes)
"You know, it's been exciting. It's still kind of up in the air on exactly what's going on, but so far the changes that have been made are exciting. We're looking to get this thing going. The rookies are as wide-eyed as ever and these weeks are as crucial as ever to get their feet wet, and get them introduced to the system. It's nothing like college anymore, and they're learning it one day at a time. But I think they're having a good workout out there."
TIGHT END DALLAS CLARK (on what kind of advice he gives rookie teammates)
"You tell them not to get frustrated and get mad. The one thing I tell them, and I tell it to them all the time -- because I've tried to do it myself -- is you try not to make the same mistake twice. The more you can make a mistake and then not get yelled at or coached up on it again, that means you're learning and getting better. But if you're that guy always getting yelled at for doing the same thing over and over, well, then, you need to stop doing that. And coaches get a little frustrated. The more you can pick up the little pieces everyday, the better you'll be."
TIGHT END DALLAS CLARK (on whether the team's offense will change)
"It doesn't sound like it. I think everything is going to stay the same. The defense is the ones who are getting their feathers ruffled a little bit with the new calls and a whole new verbiage. It's a different offseason for them. With all the coaching changes, they're the ones who have to put in the extra effort and a little work. It's not a lot of different stuff, but it sounds like there are enough things for them to be going over. For the offense, we mix things up every now and then, but the core is definitely going to stay the same."
TIGHT END DALLAS CLARK (on the importance of summer workouts)
"Absolutely. This is the time when you really enjoy football and you really enjoy your job. It's kind of at a player's pace, you really can kind of dissect or really get into the meat of certain routes, certain calls and it's a way when we have our passing sessions to get on the same page. During the season it's just go, go, go. You don't have time to break things down, but now you really have time to get on the same page and know each other's thoughts and understand everyone's problem on certain plays. This is when you get better as a team, and it's such a crucial time of the year, it can't be taken for granted."
TIGHT END DALLAS CLARK (on Peyton Manning's injury-free offseason)
(Peyton's) not different, but it's just one less thing. When you're dealing with an injury, the offseason is a great time to have it and a great time to deal with it, but it inhibits you from doing what we're doing now. I think it stressed him out a little bit (last year), not being able to be himself and come out here and throw whenever he wanted to do or do his own schedule. I think that was the first time he had to deal with something changing his off-season schedule and that's tough to deal with as an athlete. But I think he handled it well and he's enjoying this off-season a lot more than last year's."
TIGHT END DALLAS CLARK (on whether Manning is more focused this offseason)
"He could have one leg and he'd be driven. He's always at one level. That's Peyton and that's what makes him the best. He's always high energy – there is no up and down with him. He's pretty consistent and that's why he's so good year-in and year-out."
TIGHT END DALLAS CLARK (on the differences between Tony Dungy and Jim Caldwell)
"It's a little too early to tell, but just kind of with a couple meetings we've had, it's going to be different. A lot of similarities, but they're two different men. Very similar foundation, very similar core, the core beliefs and how you run a team. But it's exciting as a player to see what changes are going to be made and what is going to stay the same. As players, we're excited because it's going to be different. But we had a good thing. And if there has to be a change of head coaches, I don't think, as players, we could ask for a better situation or a better transition hiring someone from within the system and not clearing the shelf and having to start all over. This is the best-case scenario and we're excited to see what's changing moving forward."
TIGHT END DALLAS CLARK (on the retirement of Howard Mudd and Tom Moore)
"Well, time will tell. When you lose Howard and Tom, that's probably about 100 years of experience. You don't replace that. But the good thing is they did such a great job of coaching and getting everyone on the same page that you hope everyone is still on that same page and we just move forward. And the coaches who step in and take their places, they're not going to be Tom, they're not going to be Howard, and it will definitely be different. This will be an area where time will tell. Especially the relationship Tom and Peyton had, they were together for quite awhile, so it will definitely be interesting. But it's not anything we're worried or concerned about."
TIGHT END DALLAS CLARK (on Clyde Christensen)
"Clyde is a great man, great coach. He was the offensive coordinator down in Tampa when they were down there, so it's something he's done before and is comfortable with. He's a great replacement, he knows the system and he knows the personnel. He's had some time and been able to watch the team and how it works and I think he'll fit in really well.
TIGHT END DALLAS CLARK (on the departure of Marvin Harrison)
"I don't know, that's something again, I'm sorry for the same answer, but time will tell. I have no idea how that is going to work out, and the same goes for Howard and Tom. Those guys had such a career and such a legacy here with the Colts, the same thing with Marv – you don't replace him. People's responsibilities and duties are going to change somehow, but how that is I don't know. (Anthony Gonzalez) might step in, if he takes that spot and he's the guy over there, he'll step in and do a great job. We might miss a beat, we might not. Time will tell. If that calls for tight ends to get more catches and more balls thrown to them, then we're excited about that. We're just there to be used however they want us to be used."
DEFENSIVE TACKLE ED JOHNSON (on being back with the Colts)
"I'm very grateful, just happy to have a chance. I'm happy to be back. Just feeling truly blessed right now."
DEFENSIVE TACKLE ED JOHNSON (on how his return came about)
"I've been talking to Coach (Jim) Caldwell on and off since I had left. He was staying in contact with me; I was staying in contact with him. We had a relationship when I was here and he was just checking in to see how I was doing."
DEFENSIVE TACKLE ED JOHNSON (on whether he thought he would get a second chance)
"I started to get a little concerned because a lot of things weren't happening. But I just believed something was going to work out."
DEFENSIVE TACKLE ED JOHNSON (on what he did away from the field)
"When I was away, I hung out and worked with some high school guys, working out with them. I was helping coach a basketball team back home, so I was basically staying active that way."
DEFENSIVE TACKLE ED JOHNSON (on what he's learned from this experience)
"I learned a lot. I learned I couldn't do a lot of things I used to do. I learned I had to change a lot of things in my personal life. It wasn't a good situation that happened, but I think it was a good thing that it happened to me when it did, to help me later on in life. It's good to learn these things now rather than later when it could cost me more.
DEFENSIVE TACKLE ED JOHNSON (on what it was like to be out of the NFL)
"I never thought of anything like that, but it was real hard. It was something I never thought would happen. I really can't even explain it. It was rough, real rough. "
DEFENSIVE TACKLE ED JOHNSON (on where he goes from here)
"I think I have to prove myself all over again. I'm trying to do that as good as I can with my teammates and coaches and things like that. The only way I can do that is the same way it was as the first time – go hard, keep working hard and everything will work itself out."
DEFENSIVE TACKLE ED JOHNSON (on whether he believed he would get a second chance)
"I believed I would. I felt like I just needed to do some growing up and maturing a little bit. You know, everyone makes mistakes and I learned from it, so I knew somebody would give me a second chance."
DEFENSIVE TACKLE ED JOHNSON (on the measures he took to return to the Colts)
"Mostly like I said, I changed some of my behaviors, changed some of the people around me, changed some of the things I was doing. Mostly, it was just part of growing up and maturing."