He’s well aware of the Indianapolis Colts’ playoff stumbling block in each of the past two postseasons. The Patriots bounced the boys in blue in convincing fashion, most recently 45-7 in January’s AFC Championship Game in Foxborough, Mass.
The outside linebacker said his new teammates don’t speak of the defending Super Bowl champions. But the rivals are there. as motivation.
“No, you could just tell when I first got here, you just don’t use that word around here,” Cole said Wednesday. “From what I’ve seen that’s happened, I see why there’s a lot of hatred there. There’s nothing wrong, nothing wrong with that. That’s why we’re here. That’s why everybody’s here in full participation for the offseason program to win all the ball games.”
Cole, 32, started to familiarize himself with his new team during the beginning of offseason training activities at the Colts complex last week.
“Yes, there’s a lot of energy here to win ball games, to especially beat the Patriots,” he said. “Hopefully if we focus game by game and win each of the games that are going to come, we can get to the big one.”
In his first face-to-face interview with Indianapolis media, Cole reinforced his goal of winning a Super Bowl. It’s what drives him.
Cole signed a two-year, $14-million contract with $7.75 million guaranteed to bolster a Colts pass rush hopefully led by the return of franchise sack leader Robert Mathis, a six-time Pro Bowl selection. Mathis missed last season due to a four-game suspension and Achilles tendon injury. Cole has been to a pair of Pro Bowls, too, but that isn’t the bowl he has in mind.
“That’s got to be driving (me), you know what I’m saying?” he said. “Coming here and playing for the Colts, to a winning team, to a winning organization, to coaches and players that want to win to just a great group of guys, that even drives you a whole lot more.”
So far, Cole has enjoyed his new surroundings.
“I’ve come to a different city, new culture, new teammates and like I said, it’s exciting,” he said. “New is always exciting. Just glad to be here. Glad to be with a winning team. I’m excited about the future here.”
Phillip B. Wilson can be found on Twitter (@pwilson24), Facebook and Google+.