What the Colts said this offseason

The past two months have provided some memorable quotes.

The Indianapolis Colts have embarked on their separate ways to enjoy some down time before reporting for training camp on Aug. 1 at training camp.

In the past two months since late April, the team had weekly media availabilities in which a lot of words were offered about a variety of topics as everyone looked forward to the 2015 NFL season.

Here are some of the most memorable quotes from those interviews:

— Owner Jim Irsay, on his expectation for sustained excellence: “In the Andrew Luck era, we would like to win at least two World Championships.”

— Wide receiver T.Y. Hilton, on how the dynamic of the Oct. 18 game changes if it’s Tom Brady’s first game back from suspension with the New England Patriots: “You all better not miss it.”

— Outside linebacker Robert Mathis, on being cautious with his rehab from Achilles tendon surgery: “It’s frustrating because I’m used to going 100 miles an hour or whatever. Just have to be smart. I’m at the stage of my career where hey, smart not hard.”

— Quarterback Andrew Luck, on his reaction to the Colts signing wide receiver Andre Johnson: “I said, ‘Wow, Andre, sweet.’ I was in middle school when he was drafted by the Texans. I remember watching him and being excited when he got drafted to the hometown team. Now I get to play with him, so it’s cool. It really is.”

— Johnson, on how it takes a great quarterback to win the Super Bowl: “When you look at all the teams that have won past Super Bowls over the past few years, they’ve all had great quarterback play. We have a great quarterback here. I can’t say I’ve been fortunate to play with a great quarterback in my 12 years in the league. I’m able to play with one now.”

— Kicker Adam Vinatieri, on the NFL moving the point-after-touchdown kicks to the 15-yard line: “Well, I’m a traditionalist. Unless something’s broke, why fix it? But obviously people thought something was broke. We’ll deal with it, and we’ll just continue to move forward. Kickers have continued to adapt and get better with different k-ball rules and moving the balls back on kickoffs and all that stuff a while ago. We’ll just adapt and move forward with it.”

— Rookie wide receiver Phillip Dorsett, on his first NFL paycheck, if he’ll take it to the bank or stare at it for a while: “Straight to the bank. (Laughs.) Honestly, I don’t know what I’m going to do once I get it. It’s going right into the bank account.”

— Outside linebacker Trent Cole, on if his new teammates mention the Patriots: “No, you could just tell when I first got here, you just don’t use that word around here. 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.”

— Running back Vick Ballard, on changing his jersey number from 33 to 26: “I never really liked 33. I wore 26 in high school, one year in college, so I kind of look at it as a fresh start, too.”

— Tight end Dwayne Allen, on his injuries last season and why he trained for a month in Arizona with a personal trainer during offseason training activities: “It was one of those things where I didn’t have the opportunity to train the hips, but I did some rehabbing. But that’s not training. About halfway through the season, things just started to break down. That’s when you saw the ankle, the knee. The hips are always going to be something that I need to maintain and stay on top of. That’s just part of it. Getting away, getting some hands on one-on-one treatment was my main program.”

— Inside linebacker D’Qwell Jackson, on if turning 30 could mean the beginning of a career decline: “No. That’s when we’re in our prime mentally, physically. We know our strengths. We know what our weaknesses are. We understand that those other senses get heightened a bit. We’re not prime. We’re just not a spring chicken anymore. It takes us longer to warm up and stretch, but we’ll get it done.”

— Rookie wide receiver Duron Carter, on how much more he appreciates an NFL opportunity after playing in the Canadian Football League: “Oh yeah, just everyday just coming into the facility. It feels great driving in. I got my own little key card. I’m a Colt. It’s a dream come true.”

— Running back Frank Gore, on his first impressions of Luck: “Just being out there throwing balls, he’s doing the small drills that a quarterback does and he’s running the show. When we’re out there throwing the ball, he’s telling us what to do. That’s what I’m surprised about, I’m happy to see as a quarterback.”

— Offensive guard Donald Thomas, on the frustration of playing just two games in two years due to a torn quadriceps: “It was rough. It was rough. It was probably one of the lowest points in my life actually. It was tough to be on the outside looking in, so to speak. Those guys dealt with a lot, and they persevered through it. It was unfortunate that we had a lot of guys banged up. It’s just part of the game, but you just hope everyone can stay healthy. It’s the hardest thing in football, but that’s what you try to do.”

Safety Mike Adams, on mentoring young players in the secondary: “First of all, I’m going to have some Krispy Kreme donuts. Second, coffee, for anybody that wants any, let me know. I’m taking orders. (Laughs.) But I’m looking forward to it. I’m looking at schooling them a little bit and just showing them the ropes.”

Head coach Chuck Pagano, on what the Colts do to integrate veterans into the team’s culture: “No. 1 they have to be here and they have (been). As far as fitting in and becoming a Colt and fitting into the culture and all that stuff, the guys that we brought in, they’re really good football players like Andre, like Frank, like (Kendall) Langford, like Trent. Guys that are selfless, guys that are team players. It’s easy if that’s what you’re asking as far as them adjusting to what our vision is, what our culture is, what our process is, how we go about business, how our locker room is, all those kind of things, how we work, how we practice, how we meet, how we walk through, they’re team guys. It’s just like, I’m going to go off here on a tangent, just like a flowing river. What I tell them, ‘You’ve got a flowing river, jump in the flowing river.’ There’s going to be some calm waters. There’s going to be some rapids. There’s going to be some rough waters. They tell you when you get in the river, if anybody’s ever been whitewater rafting, ‘If you go in the water, get your feet out front. Make sure you get your helmet on and get your feet out front. Ride the current and go with flow. Go with the flow.’ The guys that are trying to swim upstream and fight the current, what happens to them? You’re going to drown. You’re going to drown. So my deal with all those guys is buy in. Get a left up, jump in the river and let it go. Guess what, something good will happen to you. I guarantee you won’t drown.”

Phillip B. Wilson can be found on Twitter (@pwilson24), Facebook and Google+.

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