QB-PEYTON MANNING (on the mentality of the team and it not seeming to be bothered by playing in high-profile games) Wednesday, August 29, 2007* *
"It's hard to say. Every year presents a new challenge, I guess. We do have a number of guys that have played in a number of high-profile games, but we do have a lot of young players this year. So, we know the opener will be a big-time atmosphere and it will be a change for some of our new guys. So I don't know if we can say it's automatic, but I think the more games you play in, experience does help you, that you're more comfortable, and it's about going out and trying to do your job. That's where Coach Dungy is always trying to simulate those game-like, high-pressure situations during practice, so when you get to the game situations, you're not overwhelmed by them."
QB-PEYTON MANNING (on opening the football season as defending champions) Wednesday, August 29, 2007
"This is uncharted territory for many of us, in this situation. All we know to do is what we've always done, is to prepare hard in the offseason and work hard in training camp and get on the same page with any of your new guys and be sure you're making good, smart, sound decisions and trying to throw the ball accurately. All I know to do is what we've always tried to do, is to try to get ourselves ready to go out and play good football."
QB-PEYTON MANNING (on if he has had a chance to reflect on where New Orleans was two years ago) Wednesday, August 29, 2007
"I'm certainly aware it's the two-year anniversary of (Hurricane) Katrina. There is some progress. There certainly needs to be more, and it's going to take some time. It's taken two years for the progress that we have to get to this point, and two years from now, there is still going to be more work to be done. I will say this, that the visits that I've had down there and the people that I've seen and talked to, spirits are high. People have positive attitudes. I do believe in the power of sports and the power of football helping people's spirits, whether it's the Saints, LSU is picked No. 2 in the country, Tulane has a new football coach. Football is a big deal down in New Orleans and South Louisiana. I know that part has helped people's spirits. We need people to come back to New Orleans, people need to come visit. Tourists need to come, and the city is ready for that. There is certainly plenty of work to be done. But my parents and older brother, Cooper, being current New Orleans residents, have that same positive attitude, that the city will rebuild and get back to what it was, and maybe even better."
QB-PEYTON MANNING (on what Drew Brees has done for the city of New Orleans and his charitable works) Wednesday, August 29, 2007
"Drew has done good things. Overall, a lot of the New Orleans Saints live there year-round, that don't just play in New Orleans. Drew lives actually not too far from my parents, and committed himself to New Orleans, which I commend him for that. I know Reggie Bush has been charitable in his efforts and Sean Payton lives there and is committed to the city. Like Reggie Wayne, being from New Orleans, you appreciate what the professional players have done, guys that aren't from there and really have had no previous ties to the city, how they have committed their time and their money to the city."
QB-PEYTON MANNING (on if he has gone back to New Orleans to specifically take a tour and see the devastation) Wednesday, August 29, 2007
"I have done that. It certainly keeps things in perspective. I think that people around the country need to know that we can still use their help and support, their prayers and their financial contributions. But like I said, I think what people can