INDIANAPOLIS – Inside minicamp at West 56th Street, it wasn’t just Colts rookies learning about their new home on the fly.
“Happy month of May to everyone,” smiled first-year head coach Shane Steichen. “I’m figuring out it’s a pretty big deal here, so looking forward to having a great month of May.”
And just like for IndyCar drivers at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, success for these new Colts will come to those who don’t let up off the gas.
“Just competing 100 percent with everything I do, on and off the field,” explains 2nd round pick, cornerback JuJu Brents. “Learn from the guys already here, Kenny Moore, Julian Blackmon, everyone in the (defensive backs) room. Just continue to improve every single day, out of humility have my head down, and see where it takes me to.”
The Colts’ hope is quarterback Anthony Richardson can take the franchise back to its prior glory.
“I’ve been all smiles,” says Richardson, beaming from ear to ear. “I’m grateful to be here. Extremely thankful to be here. It’s exciting. All I got to worry about is football.”
Much different than the last few months.
“No more draft,” Richardson continues, “no more people talking, no more politics. it’s just football now.”
Though it’s nice to solely be focused on football, Richardson faces new challenges as a pro.
“The biggest challenge I would say is the timing of it, trying not to rush into it and get too far ahead. I’m trying to grasp the information, as much information as I can. Not trying to rush into it. Just trying to perfect certain things so I can get better in practice.”
The rookies will get better together. For the 1st round pick Richardson, he’s learning the ropes alongside 3rd round pick, wide receiver Josh Downs, a pattern that mirrors Horseshoe history as 1st rounder Andrew Luck joined 3rd rounder T.Y. Hilton in the Colts’ 2012 draft class.
“Similar to T.Y., I just feel like working over the middle is where I thrive at,” explains Downs. “I love working over the middle. A lot of people don’t like it. You’re gonna take some hits here and there, but I feel like that’s where the money’s at.”
The toughest part about rookie minicamp? It all coming to an end. The first-year players won’t be allowed back at team headquarters for the immediate future while the veterans continue their offseason program.
“If I was able to stay, I would definitely stay,” says Richardson. “I’m excited to be here, and I don’t think I want to leave,” he adds with a chuckle.
The Colts hope is that passion for learning, and working, only grows stronger.