I'll post pictures and others fun content from my long drive from New York to Miami after tomorrow's craziness at Media Day. For now, I'll give you a taste of the access we have been granted for Super Bowl 44.
After the Peyton Manning press conference, which I attended, the league made several Colts players available to media (ie, dirty bloggers like me and Joel Thorman). I had the opportunity to ask questions and get quotes from Kelvin Hayden, Ryan Diem, and Daniel Muir.
After the jump, check out what they said. And yes, I got to rub elbows with John Clayton. Yes, he is indeed THAT cool.
At Kelvin Hayden's press table, I stood with ESPN's John Clayton, Paul Kuharsky, and others while several of us asked questions. When I walked over, Kelvin was getting asked about playing as a defensive back in Larry Coyer's system.
As a defensive back you enjoy [Coyer's scheme]. In the previous years, you could say we were more of a bend but don't break defense. This year, we're challeneging offenses to make plays.
Hayden went on to talk about the defensive scheme.
We're not just going to sit back and let the QB pick us apart and everybody run to the ball. We're going to dictate and force the QB to make plays.
Hayden went on to say the Colts players overall were more relaxed this time around prior to the Super Bowl than they were before the last one they played in.
With the conversation shifting to the discussing the coaches, I asked...
BBS: How has secondary coach Alan Williams helped you develop as a player?
Hayden: It's great that your coach has confidence in you. It's not just Alan Williams. Its just the whole group. I think we're so unique, so much like a family unit. We look at our caoches like our dads. He treats us that way sometimes. Coach Williams keeps us in tune.
BBS: Is one of your goals in this Super Bowl to be physical with the Saints receivers?
Hayden: Yes, that's every week. We want to be physical. We want to play fast. It's not going to be any different come this Sunday. Guys are going to go out there and play fast and physical. And, as a defense, we want to get off the field on third down.
ESPN's Suzy Kolber, who stood next to me the entire time I was ay Kelvin Hayden's table, asked Hayden's opinion on Drew Brees. Kelvin called Brees a "clone" of Peyton Manning.
At Daniel Muir's press table, He talked about how he felt team was fresh heading into the game.
"This isn't a vacation. It's a business trip."
One thing that makes this team special is the work put in. When you put in a lot of work with teammates, they become your family.
BBS: Talk about how you have changed as a player this year.
Muir: I lost weight. I worked even harder throughout the offseason. But, the main thing that made me change as a player is my faith. I really got back to my word. I got back to praying, hard. Getting myself into church. and that's what's really helped me tremendously. When you do that, it's easy to come into work. It's easy to go out and want to be successful at your job.
BBS: What kind of coach is your position coach, John Teerlick?
Muir: JT? That's the greatest d-line coach in the game right now. He does nothing but make Pro Bowlers. And, I mean, it's not luck. He often talks about how lucky guys say he is. He's not lucky. He's a talented coach. He knows what hes doing.
At Ryan Diem's table, I walked in on him discussing the possiblity of playing another Super Bowl in the rain (it's raining heavy here). Diem said the rain isn't an issue. He was then asked questions about Jim Caldwell, and Diem answered by saying Caldwell was very organized in his meetings. This contrasts a bit with former-Colts coach Tony Dungy, who spoke more from his heart during meetings. Caldwell uses PowerPoint a great deal in meetings to get important notes across.
Diem also echoed what Daniel Muir said about how the Colts view this Super Bowl.
"More of a business trip than it was last time."
He also stated players were more calm and reserved this week, a sentiment expressed by Kelvin Hayden earlier. I aksed Ryan about the changes on the offensive line since the last time they played in a Super Bowl. He responded by talking about former-Colts tackle Tarik Glenn.
"[We're] without Tarik, who was defintely a big part of our team [in 2006] but we've since been able to move on without him.
Diem then spoke very highly of Charlie Johnson.
Tomorrow is the media orgasm that is Media Day, and we will likely have more quotes and interviews from players and coaches. I'm off to charge my gazillion mobile devices and try and figure out what the hell I'm going to ask Peyton Manning.