Another Indianapolis Colts training camp is now history following Thursday morning’s one-hour walkthrough practice.
With the Colts set to open the home portion of their preseason schedule today (7 p.m., Lucas Oil Stadium), coach Jim Caldwell wants to see his team ramp things up against the Washington Redskins.
“It was certainly a good [training] camp for us. We made steady improvement, I think. We got better,” Caldwell stressed.
“What we have to do now is finish it off. To have a culmination of this particular portion of camp, [the Colts need] to play well and play better than we played last week.”
“We got as much as we could get done here. We did it in a normal way, but we worked extremely hard. Extra meetings and things of that nature, which helped us, particularly with some of the young guys. We’ll continue to do that. We milked it for as much as we possibly could.”
Indianapolis lost 33-10 to the St. Louis Rams in the Colts’ preseason opener last Saturday. The starters saw limited work in the game. The workload is expected to change against the Redskins, however.
“Everything needs work. There is not area that I can tell you that I’m very, very comfortable with,” he admitted. “But that’s the way it should be at this time of the year, particularly in our state with some of the young guys that are working and that we’re trying to get a feel for. So we have a number of things that are in question. [Putting together a good team] is going to happen, but it just might take us a little bit.”
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n Manning coming back … soon — While there is still no firm deadline as to when quarterback Peyton Manning will return to the practice field, it appears he’ll be back sooner rather than later in the preseason.
“We’re just not talking about any starting quarterback. We’re talking about one of the all-time greats. His presence, his leadership are things that are very, very difficult to replace,” Caldwell said.
“But he’s coming back. It’s not a matter of if. It’s when. Right now, he’s rehabbing and getting himself ready. He’ll be back with us. He’s making good progress.”
n Playing to win — Despite sporting a 4-24 preseason record since 2004, winning is still very much at the top of Caldwell’s list to accomplish tonight.
But the process of player evaluation enters into the equation as well.
“We have an obligation to make sure we get a good look at guys so we can determine who’s going to make the team. That’s extremely important. That’s hard to do when you haven’t had the opportunity to see them [in the spring], so you have to really know what your goal and aim are when you’re going into the preseason,” he said.
“We have to continue to evaluate. You evaluate by giving guys opportunities. But when they stop keeping score, I’ll stop worrying about it. It’s up there for a reason. We’re trying to put points on the board. So that’s important as well.”
n Injury list — Sitting out Thursday morning’s light workout were S Al Afalava (groin), DE Jamaal Anderson (quad), WR Austin Collie (knee), WR Anthony Gonzalez (hamstring), DT Tommie Harris (hamstring), LB Ernie Sims (appendectomy), WR Reggie Wayne (personal) and PK Adam Vinatieri (personal).
It’s not known if Collie, Gonzalez, Wayne or Vinatieri will be available for the Redskins game.
• Turner returns to home state — Washington assistant head coach/running backs coach Bobby Turner will be coming back to familiar surroundings tonight.
Turner grew up in East Chicago and attended Indiana State, where he played football and basketball. He coached on the high school level in Kokomo and on the collegiate level at ISU and Purdue.
Another Indianapolis Colts training camp is now history following Thursday morning’s one-hour walkthrough practice.
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