The popular message hitting the Twitter world of those who follow Colts players on Saturday evening was the speech given by their head coach Chuck Pagano.
At a team meeting Saturday night, Pagano issued a simple, yet powerful message that resonated with the 90 players.
“Just keep preaching team. We are here as a team. It doesn’t matter what happens outside of this facility as long as we take care of what’s inside of here and get better every day, every meeting, every practice and things will take care of itself,” running back Donald Brown said of Pagano’s message.
This marks the first training camp for Pagano as an NFL head coach and he echoed similar sentiments on what his message was to the team.
“This is a great experience for all of us. A great time for all of us, the enthusiasm, the energy, the excitement, you know these guys like I said they really want to make amends for what happened last year and they’ve done all the right things to this point,” Pagano said.
For those on the outside the grind of training camp could very easily take its toll on players. The two-a-day practices during the heat of summer haven’t, and won’t, affect the mindset of those in the locker room.
“Every year is different. But there is a lot of energy here right now. It’s exciting to be around. It’s exciting to be a part of this organization right now,” Brown said. “There’s a lot of new faces but we are starting to become familiar with one another, more familiar with the systems and get better each and every day.”
Throughout minicamps the energy level seen at practice was evident on both sides of the ball and that remained the same during the team’s first walk-through.
Following practice on Sunday, Pagano gave the media a hint of what he shared with his players.
“This thing is about family, you know, and it’s about serving. What I told them when they left here was I don’t want you to worry about anything except for two things: how to become a champion and how to serve,” Pagano said.
“I don’t know when that championship will come but when it does we’ll look back on it and know exactly why it happened. We don’t have a choice in this, you know, and everybody’s got a job to do and it’s basically we can, we must, and we will to get the job done by any means necessary. Certainly by playing by the rules in the framework of the rules and just take it like I said one day at a time and great things will happen because really to be honest with you nobody expects this team to do much and so, there might have been a little bit of that fueled, but they’re ready.”
Tags: chuck pagano, donald brown
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COLTS CAMP NOTEBOOK
Intro: Sunday, July 29 is the first day of practice for the Colts at Anderson University. The 2011 training camp will run in Anderson until August 17.
ANDERSON – Another training camp has officially begun for the Indianapolis Colts with the first two-a-days of 2012 in the book.
After a morning walk-through, the Colts picked up the pace in their two-hour afternoon in front of a crowd of about 3,000 people at Anderson University.
Head coach Chuck Pagano addressed the media following the morning walk-through and was pleased with how his team handled the ‘between the ears’ side of football.
“This practice we’re not looking for intensity, we’re looking for the mental part of it, how much they can take from the meetings last night, the meetings this morning and then come out here and execute their assignments,” Pagano said. “So, intensity is not what we’re looking for the walk-through but the mental part of it was excellent.”
The Colts returned to the practice field at 1:50 p.m. and the offense had a very impressive afternoon in front of some familiar faces.
Former Colts head coach Tony Dungy took in practice Sunday afternoon with members of his family after Colts owner Jim Irsay invited him.
“It’s exciting to have Tony Dungy come out and I know I had asked Tony to come out and visit with Chuck. I think they had a great conversation last night. I think it’s a great chance for Tony to share his experience in Tampa and here,” Irsay said.
“Just going from assistant coach in the league to head coach and that connection and that experience, I know they had a good conversation. It’s nice to have Tony around just for a day and to see him at practice and that sort of thing.”
Dungy and Pagano sat down for a meeting on Saturday evening before the Super Bowl winning coach watched practiced from the sidelines on Sunday and then addressed the team on the field afterwards.
“It was fun to see the start of a new era. I got to talk to Jim Irsay for a little bit and he’s very excited. I watched practice and I can see why. I got to spend some time with Coach Pagano last night and he’s special. I can see why Irsay really, you know, hit it off with him,” Dungy said.
I got a chance to meet Andrew (Luck), watch him, see the decisions he’s making and just the command of the huddle and command of the field. They’re going to be in good hands for a long time. So it was fun to see. And then to be able to address the team and talk to them about, you know, what it means to play football here in Indiana, what it means to have these fans and what they can do to lay their own foundation. It was a pretty special afternoon for me.”
One of the highlights from the first few days at training camp was the success of the team’s conditioning test conducted on Saturday.
“I can tell you this, 11 years in the NFL we’ve had conditioning tests, you know, wherever I’ve been and we had 100 percent pass the test. So, I can’t tell you how I proud I am of these guys,” Pagano said.
You know, it goes back to the trust, loyalty, and respect thing basically our core values. You know, we trusted these guys, we let them go five to six weeks after an offseason and everything that we did, they all went home and they did exactly what they were supposed to do.”
The atmosphere was very lively at the first day of practice and the players seem to be feeding off the message that Pagano is preaching to them.
With over half the roster participating in their first training camp in Anderson, the cohesion of turning 90 players into one team is beginning to take shape.
“Every year is different whether you are in the same organization or a different organization. But there is a lot of energy here right now. It’s exciting to be a part of this organization right now,” running back Donald Brown said. “Like I said there are a lot of new faces, but we are starting to become familiar with one another, more familiar with the systems and getting better each and every day.”
LB-A.J. Edds (knee)
The offense had a very successful first day at practice as quarterback Andrew Luck spread the wealth among many of his receivers on the afternoon. Wide receiver Austin Collie was a recipient of many of Luck’s passes and rookie wideout LaVon Brazill had a couple impressive catches. Defensively, cornerback Korey Lindsey had two interceptions, one thanks to a deflection by safety Tom Zbikowski.
PLAYER QUOTE OF THE DAY
Running back Donald Brown on if the new energy being created is beneficial for him:
“It is. I mean it’s beneficial for everybody. You need energy. This is an emotional game. You need energy and excitement. It’s a great atmosphere here right now and each day we need to come out here and put our heads to the grindstone and keep working.
COACH PAGANO SAYS
On his excitement level at training camp:
“Everybody gets so excited about vacation time, you know, getting out of here. Players love to get away from us, we love to get away from them and go enjoy, you know, a little family time, reconnect if you will, but it only takes a couple of weeks and most wives are ready to get us back to work. This is a great experience for all of us. A great time for all of us, the enthusiasm, the energy, the excitement, you know, these guys like I said they really want to make amends for what happened last year and they’ve done all the right things to this point.”
NOTE OF THE DAY
Center Sampson Satele has changed jersey numbers to 64. Offensive tackle George Foster has changed jersey numbers to 66.
Who holds the Colts record for most career playoff points scored? (scroll to the bottom to find the answer)
The team will follow the same practice schedule they had on Sunday with the 1:50-4:00 p.m. practice being open to the public.
WHO’S COVERING THE COLTS
ESPN’s Bob Holtzman was at practice on Sunday. NFL Network also made their way to Anderson on Sunday to take in practice. Scott Hanson, host of the NFL Network show NFL RedZone, was at the afternoon practice.
The weather in Anderson was mostly sunny with a high of 87 degrees. The low on Sunday was 66 degrees. The forecast for Monday calls for a 30 percent chance for an isolated shower with a high of 87 degrees.
Sunday’s Trivia Question: Who holds the Colts record for most career playoff points scored?
Answer: Adam Vinatieri has 70 career playoff points during his time with the Colts (2006-2011).
Tags: A.J. Edds, Adam Vinatieri, Andrew Luck, austin collie, Bob Holtzman, chuck pagano, donald brown, George Foster, Jim Irsay, Korey Lindsey, LaVon Brazill, sampson satele, Scott Hanson, tom zbikowski
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There was no hesitation in Colts offensive coordinator Bruce Arians’ voice when asked what he looks for out of his running backs.
“Physicality,” Arians said on Saturday.
All it took was one word and Arians made it clear that the Colts will be a running team built on power this season.
“We want to be able to run the football when we want to run the football. There aren’t any numbers, every game dictates different numbers. But when we want to run it, we want to be able to run it, and be able to be physical.”
Arians talked about taking an ‘old school football’ approach to running the football and he has multiple backs at his disposal this training camp.
A familiar face to Arians, but not to Colts fans is newly signed running back Mewelde Moore.
The last four seasons Arians and Moore were together with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Moore knows the importance of paying attention to detail with Arians.
“It’s all about getting focused making sure we’re on the same page and just doing everything we are asked to do, what coach requires of us to do, make sure we are assignment sharp,” Moore said.
Moore, a nine-year NFL veteran, was signed by the Colts on June 19, so this is his first practice action he has had with his new teammates.
“I’m still learning names and still trying to figure out all the guys and everything but for the most part I feel comfortable,” Moore said. “It feels like family to me and I’m just really focused that I do my part.”
With nine years of experience in the NFL, Moore has more years in the league than the other four Colts running backs have combined.
Returning leading rusher Donald Brown is entering his fourth season with the Colts and said he is looking forward to getting back to a power running game.
“I love the system. Just some downhill, smash mouth running,” Brown said. “That’s what I’m comfortable with, that’s what I’m excited about.”
Coach Chuck Pagano called Brown the ‘bell cow’ of the backfield during mini-camp but even Brown knows a successful running game is anything but a one-person job.
“We have a great backfield right now, guys that bring many different things to the table. It’s going to be a great year.”
Tags: bruce arians, chuck pagano, donald brown, Mewelde Moore
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