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Indianapolis Colts 2010 Training Camp: Indy Beloves Strongly In Curtis Painter

Indianapolis Star’s columnist Bob Kravitz asked Indianapolis Colts’ head coach Jim Caldwell if he is comfortable letting Curtis Painter being the back-up to the best player in the league, Peyton Manning. He asked if he would be worried if Manning was injured and Painter stepped in, he would be fine with it.

“Sometimes first impressions stick in one’s head about the way they feel about an individual,” Caldwell is saying, referring to Painter’s dreadful performances late last season. “If you think back to last fall when he had an opportunity to get some reps and play in the preseason, he played well because he got some rhythm and some opportunities to make plays, and he used his athleticism and directed the team very well. But then during the course of last year, we had so many close games, all those come-from-behind victories, he didn’t get any chances to play.

“Conversely, you look at Jim Sorgi in 2005, we had a number of games with significant leads. He would go in late in the third quarter and fourth quarter and played quite a bit. So he got a little further ahead.”

Caldwell continued talking to Kravitz.

“You’re going to see with Curtis, a few more reps and opportunities, he’s going to get a lot better,” Caldwell is saying. “He’s got the size, the physical tools in terms of arm strength, the whole package, and he’s learning. There’s no question that everyone should be optimistic about his future.”

Caldwell seems confident in Painter.

Defense Delivers in Practice

A cool, but painful-looking scene happened at the Colts’ training camp on Thursday’s practice when Peyton Manning delivered a nice slant pass to number one receiving target, Reggie Wayne. Wayne caught it but unexpectedly found himself hit very hard by starting outside linebacker, Phillip Wheeler. Wheeler delivered a loud collision on Wayne and it was a hard-hitting night.

“Just a little brotherly tap, that’s all,” defensive end Robert Mathis said, smiling. “Ain’t going to hurt nobody.”

Wayne was the exact opposite. He wasn’t very happy seeing that the receivers are taking this much contact and after the play where he got shattered by Wheeler, he flipped the ball at him.

“No harm,” cornerback Kelvin Hayden told the Indianapolis Star. “Anybody not expecting a hit that gets hit is going to react the natural way.”

It seemed like a lot of fun in the practice where it had 6,500 witnesses looking at the number one defense trying to stop the number one offense.

“We enjoy it a lot,” Mathis said. “On defense we’ve got a couple of trash talkers. We like talkin’ trash with No. 18. Yeah, I’m one of them. I give (Manning) a little crap in practice. It’s all for the good.”

The defense had some nice, strong moments, including a leaping interception by safety Bob Sanders in the end zone. But the offense played well, too. All-in-all, it was a great practice for Big Blue.

Turner Out, McCauley In

The Colts made some roster moves, by releasing rookie cornerback Thad Turner and signing veteran Marcus McCauley. McCauley is 6’1″ and 203 pounds has played in the NFL for four seasons so far. He has played for several teams such as the Minnesota Vikings, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Detroit Lions, New Orleans Saints, and the Washington Redskins. Let’s see what he can do in Indy.

Tickets for Sale

There are over 400 pre-season tickets available for the Colts Week One pre-season game against the San Francisco 49ers.

Defense Also Playing a Bit of Offense, Too?

Eric Foster, Mitch King, and Cody Glenn will also give their shots of playing a bit on the offensive side of the ball this year. Manning has some solid receiving options but Glenn, Foster, and King look to give their shots at trying out for goal-line situations to make some short-yardage runs and catches.

“That’s a dream,” Foster said. “Hopefully it comes true (in a game) and I can do my little dance. Yeah, I’ve got a dance.”

Foster and Glenn have seen their times at fullback in blocking situations for the past seasons during some games. But now they can see more opportunities. But they need to watch out for King, who was an accomplished fullback back in high school.

“I don’t know about being comfortable because I’ve got the nerves flying around,” King said. “You’ve got to look comfortable to make it look good. Peyton throws a great ball. All of the quarterbacks here throw a great ball. They make it easy for us.”

King says he is open to multiple roles, but like being defensive lineman the best.

“You’ve got to be open to anything,” he said. “I’m a D-lineman first and a short-yardage guy next.”


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