New Colts coach Jeff Saturday spoke to the media yesterday. He speaks from the heart – simply but intelligently. His ability to communicate with the staff and roster will be critical to their buy-in and desire to compete amid a chaotic period in Colts history.
Here are some passages from his comments. My favorite moment was when a media member responded to an answer by saying, “I find that very hard to believe.” Jeff responded, “Look at me. Did not come up. Not once. I’m going to tell you how it is. You’re going to ask me a question and I’m going to tell you straight up.” End of conversation! Distrust Saturday at your own risk.
Here are other notable quotables:
“These are my people, bro. Like my adult life was forged here. Like my wife and I, we raised our kids here. These people matter to me. This organization matters to me, right? The people in the community matter to me. I mean everybody thinks this is flip it. This is not. I care. Whatever I can do and when he said, ‘Hey, can you help me?’ Absolutely I’ll help. If somebody called and said this is an opportunity to say – for the people that are in this room and in this building, would you do it? Absolutely I’m going to do it. I had to make sure my wife was on board. She and I talked about it, prayed about it. I called him back and I said, ‘Let’s do it.’”
“I’ve got big shoulders. I know the bullets I’m going to take. I’m good with it.”
“Here’s the deal, I’m completely comfortable in who I am as a man. I know I can lead men. I know I know the game of football and I’m passionate about it. I have no fear about – are you as qualified as somebody else? I spent 14 years in the locker room. I went to the playoffs 12 times. I’ve got five dudes in the Hall of Fame that I played with. You don’t think I’ve seen greatness? You don’t think I’ve seen how people prepare, how they coach, how they GM, how they work? I’ve won Super Bowls, been to two. Here’s the deal man, none of us are promised a good job. I may be terrible at this and after eight games, I’ll say, ‘God bless you. I am no good.’ I may be really good at it. I have no idea, but I dang sure ain’t going to back down. I can tell you that. If life ain’t an adventure, it ain’t for me. I’m ready to go do this.”
“I’m not going to change. I told them if I’m not authentic, we’ve got nowhere to go. It’s who I am.”
“(The coaching staff) are very bright people that know their roles and everyone to a man, has stepped up and then some. Can I stay late? What else can I do? What other box can we check together? Can I help when – when I told the offense that Parks (Frazier) was going to do this, I think it was Reggie (Wayne), slapped the table, let’s go. He got excited. What can we do to help?”
(About taking a field goal or going for it on fourth down) “That’s my decision. Listen, I’m an o-lineman. I work awfully hard to get points, I’m going to take points. I am not a – it’s a hard living. It’s a hard living in there.”
“For me, the best thing is to get on the grass. I can’t tell you how excited I am to actually go do football. I’ve got notes from this walk-thru this morning. So, now we’ll get into the actual coaching and those things. Again, I’m encouraging my staff to take ownership, push forward and let your voice be heard. I’m not critical, I’m open ears and open-minded. Let’s work together.”
(About the players) “I believe in them. I believe this is a good football team. They’ve played in some games where they haven’t played their best. The players have to step up and make plays. The talent is definitely there. These guys have it. Can’t beat ourselves, made a lot of mistakes. Biggest point of emphasis on offense, don’t turn the ball over. That pigskin controls 53 of you and a whole lot of others livelihoods. That thing has got to stay with us.
Easy to believe, easy to like, and hope he’s as easy to follow.
We’ll see Sunday.