Indianapolis Colts

JAMES TALKS COLTS, MANNING, PAGANO, WAYNE

Posted by Kevin Bowen on September 21, 2012 – 8:00 am

To go along with Craig Kelley’s story on Edgerrin James being inducted into the Colts Ring of Honor on Sunday, below are some of the highlights from Thursday’s conference call James had with the media.

Some of the topics covered were similar to what is in the story linked above but no one can get enough ‘Edge’, so here you go:

What can you tell us about Chuck Pagano from your days at the University of Miami?

“Everybody loves Chuck. When we were at the U, he’s a players’ coach but he’s going to get in your face. Everybody likes Chuck, he’s a fun guy, always laughing around and everything. I had to deal with Chuck because they tried to put me on special teams. I wasn’t a special teams guy, but being that I was a freshman. Chuck he was in charge of I think kickoff return and I was not too fond of doing all that stuff but that’s how we ended up bumping heads a lot in meetings. But we started hanging around more because I had to actually be in those special teams meetings.”

How surprised are you that Reggie Wayne is still playing at this level?

“Not surprised at all because Reggie puts in the work. Reggie don’t take no days off. Reggie is going to train. Reggie is going to do everything that it takes. And then Reggie is smart so Reggie understands what it takes to play at a high level and then he takes good care of his body. A lot of this is about taking good care of your body. Reggie has gone through that year in and year out.”

There’s probably a spot on the wall for Reggie in a few years?

“Put it right beside me, man. That’s my boy. Everywhere I’ve been, me and Reggie have been together. At the University of Miami, Reggie was right there in the audience, he was one of the people that has always been with me every step of the way.”

What type of impact did Peyton Manning have on your career?

“Peyton was real detailed, a hard worker, he outworked everybody. Peyton did everything it took to put himself into position to have success. I’m never surprised about what he’s able to accomplish because he was not only the top player in the league but he actually did everything it took to put himself in that position. He put in hours upon hours, upon hours. Then when you would go to his house and it looked like you were back in the locker room again. That’s the stuff that kind of made you. When you start saying how much time he put into that stuff.”

What did it mean to you that Mr. Irsay had you come down and be with the team at the Super Bowl in Miami?

“It’s like family. I didn’t expect anything other than that because Mr. Irsay has always been somebody that’s been super close to us.  I’ll always be a part of that team and I’ll always be a part of that family. There’s the business side of it that takes you in a different direction. But the day that Joseph Addai was drafted and on that team, I was on the phone with him trying to get him a good grasp of the offense, trying to make sure that he understands what he has to do and I made sure that he was able to call me. I was still a part of that team. I stayed in contact with everybody. I was just on Colts west probably.”

Of everything that you accomplished, is there one thing that you are the most proud of in your career?

“Just going out there to help win games and be able to do everything that is required to be a running back. Not just a back that just runs the ball but somebody that can actually catch the ball, somebody that can actually block, do everything. That’s one thing that I liked about it. You can go out there and do some of everything so there’s nothing out there that you can’t actually do.”

Did you feel you had a couple of years left in you?

“If everything in my personal life wouldn’t have taken the turn it has taken, then I could have continued to play. Once you stopped doing the training and you stop doing the things that it takes, that’s when you know it’s over. I had bigger things to take care of. I didn’t want to be out playing football when I had my kids and they need me more than football needed me. Let somebody else get out there. Open the door for somebody else. That spot I was using, somebody else could steal that spot that really needed it.”

Were there teams that expressed interest after Seattle?

“Yeah, we got phone calls from teams to come. Drew (Rosenhaus) was my agent and I remember one particular call when I told Drew, ‘I’m not even going to lie, I’m not even up for it.’ There’s more important things out there than just football, to be with the kids. I didn’t want to be playing football all these years and then all of a sudden I look up and my daughter’s grown. I want to at least be there and spend time with them.”

Do you feel like there was a transition with the fans where they didn’t know what to think of you at first but by the end you were one of the most popular Colts that has ever come through the town?

“You know coming from the Midwest, coming from South Florida, it’s totally different. Coming up and just being myself and doing what I had to do and kind of just staying out of everybody’s way, it kind of started meshing the right way. I enjoyed it. The people up there have always been nice. There are some nice people up there in Indianapolis.”


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