*MAY 20, 2005 *
QB-PEYTON MANNING (on how different mini camp is without Edgerrin James)
"Edgerrin has been a teammate, the guy lining up behind me for the past seven years, so it's certainly an adjustment, and kind of out of respect to Edgerrin, I don't think that Edgerrin James is really replaceable. I think it's adjustable. He's been one of the best teammates that I have had in the time I've been playing football, the way he runs, the way he catches, the way he blocks, the way he picks up linebackers maybe he's not even responsible for, but he thinks the quarterback might be in trouble and he bailed me out a number of times. That's the part where the business side of the NFL comes into play. He and I will always be friends. We won't be teammates anymore, and I'm sad about that, but you try to adjust. Drafting Joseph Addai in the first round, and Dominic Rhodes and James Mungro have worked really hard this offseason, both are in tip-top shape, so there's going to be some healthy competition right there. Whoever is going to be starting at tailback this season, whether it's by committee or one guy, is going to have a good year, and I can promise you that."
QB-PEYTON MANNING (on how the offense changes without Edgerrin James)
"(Offensive Coordinator) Tom Moore's offense has always been about the players that he has. That's what makes him such a great coach. Some coaches are so set on running their offense and, 'This is what I have to do' and 'This is the way it has to be.' Tom builds his offense around his players, around the weapons that he has."
QB-PEYTON MANNING (on if it will be unfair to compare the next running back to Edgerrin James)
"Absolutely it will be unfair. Edgerrin was the fourth pick of that (1999) draft, and you look back, and I say the best NFL player to come out of that draft. You could argue Donovan McNabb as well, Jevon Kearse was in that draft and is a good player, but if you ask me who the best player in the 1999 draft was, I'm going to say Edgerrin James. The fourth pick in the draft is supposed to be able to come in and do things and play right away. To come in and lead the league in rushing was not a real surprise to (Colts President) Bill Polian. After I saw him in his first practice and after I saw his first run against the Saints, he made three guys miss and took it for 15 yards, I said, 'Wow, this guy is pretty good.' So, it will be unfair to compare the next starting tailback to Edgerrin. Each of these guys has their own identity. Each of these guys brings something to the table, and ultimately, it's about doing the best they can to help us win. But they have big shoes to fill, no question about it."
QB-PEYTON MANNING (on the importance of moving on from last season)
"We've had outstanding offseason workout attendance, which I think is extremely vital to having a good regular season and hopefully postseason, and guys are committed to being better players and a better team in 2006 than we were last year. Certainly when you lose your last game, it leaves a bit of a sour taste in your mouth, but it makes you want to work harder and try to be a better player and a better team. That's been my philosophy and my goals in my offseason work so far, meeting with (Assistant Head Coach/Quarterbacks Jim Caldwell) and working out with receivers and trying to get on the same page this weekend with some of our new players like Joseph Addai, whether it's Dominic Rhodes or James Mungro who will be playing more snaps and repetitions, it's important to try to get on the same page. You try to learn from last year, but you do have to move on because it is a new season."