— PK Adam Vinatieri had surgery on his right hip in early June. Vinatieri had been bothered by soreness in the hip for more than a year. While team officials expect Vinatieri to make a complete recovery and be ready for the start of the regular season on Sept. 13, the Colts have added Shane Andrus to the roster as an insurance policy. Andrus began his NFL career with Indianapolis as a free agent in 2006.
— WR Austin Collie knows he has his work cut out for him.
Not only does Collie have to learn the Colts' offense, which isn't easy for a rookie or a veteran NFL player, he is also in contention for a starting job this season. A fourth-round draft pick out of BYU, Collie is expected to be in the mix for the team's third receiver spot.
"Right now, it's tough. I lose patience with myself, expecting to pick things up quickly. My brain is fried every day," he said recently. "I'm making mistakes right now. But I'm going to learn it."
First-year head coach Jim Caldwell is confident that Collie will be able to make the transition from college receiver to the NFL. "We do feel that Austin is a young rookie force that has done a tremendous job in learning. He seems to be the kind of guy that catches on quickly. He has a good feel for spatial awareness. He's gotten to the point where it seems that he is starting to connect well with Peyton (Manning). I do feel that we have certainly made some ground in that area," Caldwell said.
Sanders is a fan of new coordinator Larry Coyer
— S Bob Sanders likes what he's seen of the way new defensive coordinator Larry Coyer is handling things so far.
"We're excited to have him here. (He's added) a lot of different wrinkles for us. Good thing is he'll move us around a little bit more. We're excited. Everything has not been installed yet, but from what he said there's a lot of good things that we haven't done, which is good. It opens up everyone's game," Sanders said. "There are some things that we are doing a little bit different, (but) a lot of things are the same. The terminology has changed a little bit. I think once (training) camp comes around we'll know a little bit more on what I'll be doing and some of the other safeties."
— Running back Donald Brown appears to be the real deal. The Colts' first-round draft pick has done a pretty good job of picking up the team's offense in a relatively short amount of time. Brown showed good burst between the tackles and could be used as a weapon as a pass receiver out of the backfield.
— CB Marlin Jackson looks to be making strong progress from midseason knee surgery. Getting Jackson back on the field will be key for the Colts, who have to make a decision on what they want to do contract-wise with the 2005 first-round draft pick. He could become a free agent after the 2009 season.
— WR Pierre Garcon is making a strong bid to become the third receiver in Indianapolis' starting rotation. Garcon had an inconsistent rookie season in 2008, both as a potential punt and kickoff returner as well as receiver in limited work. He has improved as a receiver during the offseason, both in catching the ball and in running his routes.
— OG Ryan Lilja said recently that he learned a lot about himself while sitting out the 2008 season due to multiple knee surgeries.
"I've come to grips with what can happen after football. I've done a lot of soul searching. You don't take it for granted anymore, and maybe I did before. I learned my lesson," he said. "I'm having a blast out there just running around practicing, getting in the huddle and hitting guys and moving around. It's 10 times better than sitting in an ice tub or working with the therapist on your knee all day."
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