INDIANAPOLIS – Ryan Grigson is in the midst of final evaluations of a 90-man roster that must be cut to 75 by next Tuesday.
The Colts are about a month into the 2014 Training Camp and Grigson has been pleased with what he's seen from his starting units in the early parts of the preseason.
Grigson met with the media today and covered a variety of topics:
On Delano Howell missing time with a neck injury:
"Anytime there's anything with the neck, you've got to cross your T's and dot your I's. That's a serious area. It's something that's been nagging him. He's going through the whole entire process of seeing multiple people so he can formulate that opinion with his wife, and his agent, and himself, and us, and Chuck (Pagano) and all of us, and make the decision that's best for Delano. Hopefully, he's seeing another specialist so we can pinpoint what the problem is exactly, and hopefully he's back out there playing for us soon.
"Like I said, we are just going to keep getting the information as it comes. He's a guy that we hope is back but like I said it's a neck. I can't make judgments on a neck. That's what the doctor's are for. That's why he's getting multiple opinions because you want to make sure that everybody has their opinion kind of going in the same direction because it's not like you're dealing with a fingernail here. You're dealing with your neck. That's something that has to be really looked at with a fine-tooth comb. There's no decisions that have been made. There's no feeling one way or another where he's going to be here or not be here. We want him to see as many people as possible so he's comfortable going in one of those directions. We'll see. We'll have some information here, hopefully by the end of the week."
On what he's seen from the running game and Trent Richardson during the early part of the preseason:
"Well we're going in the right direction. I think the surge even with the guys, we don't have our starters in there right now, but to me there's definitely more of a surge than I'd even saw last year and that's with even some of our two's in there. So I think we're getting more of a push which is going to create more room to run the football. Then hopefully we get Jack (Mewhort) back going here and get him rolling. (Jonotthan) Harrison's doing a really good job, we have to still keep evaluating him and watch him here in these games coming ahead. There's two more preseason games left, there's a lot to be told still.
"Well I think it's going to be a little bit different picture this year just because you're going to have more guys outside that are going to command more attention from the defense. So you think that's going to open up more, and I think with an improved offensive line all those things should take care of themselves. Again Trent, he needs to answer the bell and do his job to the best of his ability. We're all accountable here. I will say this, there's a lot of backs I think last year that wouldn't have got 2.8 (yards per carry) considering the amount of people he had in that box and the amount of bodies that were hitting him before he even seemed to get the ball sometimes. He's such a hard runner, we know how tough he is, but he's got to produce just like all these guys do on this final 53."
On the status of Ahmad Bradshaw bouncing back from a season-ending neck injury:
"We sit down with our docs; the neck is something to never take lightly. The kind of person that Ahmad is, he only knows one speed. So we have to make sure he was structurally sound and there wasn't a chance for him to really hurt himself. I felt comfortable with it, obviously he felt comfortable with it. Toughness is never going to be an issue with him, that's going to be us having to pull him back because he's a tough guy and he's going to play the game one speed, and he's a great example to the rest of our guys. He looks spry out there, he moves around really well, he catches the ball well. He's got a burst and we're looking forward to seeing him here."
On Reggie Wayne playing this preseason:
"We haven't gotten to that point yet to where we've made a decision on that. He's kind of the least of our worries, honestly. Reggie is the least of our worries. It really hasn't come up all that often. We know that Reggie's going to be ready when we need to call on him."
On Robert Mathis playing this preseason:
"He falls into the Reggie category. It's like to me, do I ever question if Robert Mathis knows how to play this game? No. Has he done it at a high level for many years? Yes. It's kind of trying to find a fine line to where you want him to be game ready, but at the same time game ready for what? He's not going to be there the first four games. So we've just got to be smart. We know that a guy like Robert Mathis on his own, he's going to be getting ready. He's going to be taking mental reps in his mind. He's going to be dreaming about playing. He loves this game. So he's another one that you just kind of don't worry about."
On if it's alarming that rookie Jack Mewhort missed about a week of practice due to a knee injury:
"Well yeah. You want him to be, especially a rookie, you don't want him to have anything more holding him back, which already lack of experience is always going to be a hurdle to overcome for a young guy. We just need him to get back to where, we've had discussions with him, we want him back to where we see the same guy that we saw in OTAs and minicamp playing with the base, playing with that confidence because you're talking about a guy that's played a ton of snaps at a bunch of different positions that's never had anything. So he's going through that in his mind. That in itself take some time to get over, and he's going in the right direction. He's another one of those guys that he's his own worst enemy. He wants to be out there yesterday, when that's just going to end up causing him more problems. We've talked to him about it. You can't play in this league when you're only 50 percent. We need him to be as good as he possibly can because we've got a long season ahead of us.
"I think he's going to be fine. I think he's going to be fine, I really do. We just have to get that thing calmed down because he was pounding on it. It's one of those things where it's kind of like, we talked to the trainers and things like that, it's one of those situations with rest hopefully it gets completely calmed down so there's nothing angry in there anymore. But it's also kept in mind that he needs to also get reps because at some point he's got to play an elite team in this league on September 7th. So we've got to kind of keep all that in mind, so it's a balancing act."
On last week's game and weighing how well your starters played with what happened in the fourth quarter:
"First and foremost, when we play in Lucas Oil, we expect to win. We expect to win. We don't expect to give up all those points in a single quarter, no matter if we have the eights in there, if we had a 200-man roster. But quite honestly, from our one's and two's, I think we did really well. I thought we matched up really well. I thought we competed very well. Even the week previously, our two's against their one's, I thought did a good job. There were some really promising things I thought. The guys, their level of play is ascending, like you hope it would in these four weeks of games. But at the same time, no one likes going back to a locker room that's like a morgue. When you come back into that locker room, we always want to have that feeling of when we go into the locker room after a game and Chuck is bringing everybody up and Mr. Irsay is in there, in the middle of the Horseshoe, it should be jubilation. That's just something Chuck immediately addressed. No matter who's in there, that's not Colts football."