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08-11-2010, 08:29 AM

Peyton Manning on Rookie Hazing and Haircuts: 'We Don't Do That Around Here'0
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8/10/2010 4:36 PM ET By John Oehser

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John Oehser
NFL Writer
ANDERSON, Ind. -- You won't see any wacky photos of weird haircuts from the Colts' 2010 Training Camp.

The Colts don't haze, and they actually do whatever they can to make rookies feel as if they're part of the team. Colts quarterback Peyton Manning said there's a simple reason:

They're not only part of the team, but they're expected to be important factors in the team's success.

"You've seen all the highlights with the rookie hazing and haircuts," Manning said Tuesday. "We don't do that around here, because we don't treat the guys like rookies. We expect those guys to play this year and to play well."

Manning, the Colts' starting quarterback and the Associated Press NFL Most Valuable Player a record four times including each of the last two seasons said the Colts are tough on their rookies in one sense: expectation level.

The Colts historically have gotten big contributions from rookies, with wide receiver Austin Collie, running back Donald Brown, cornerbacks Jerraud Powers and Jacob Lacey and punter Pat McAfee all playing key roles last season.

"We're probably not very patient," Manning said. "We don't cut them a whole lot of slack. If they're on the team, we expect them to know the offense and to be in there. That's why we treat them all like veterans."

The Colts' approach in the area is far from a recent trend. Throughout much of Manning's career, which has coincided with the tenure of Colts President Bill Polian, they have remained one the younger teams in the NFL. While they pay well to keep players they drafted who they consider core, franchise-level players, they historically allow contributing players to leave via free agency to stay under the salary cap.

Key to the philosophy is Polian's ability to draft talent capable of contributing quickly, and in recent seasons, players such as safety Antoine Bethea, running back Joseph Addai and last year's group have been critical to the success of a team that has made eight consecutive playoff appearances.

Also crucial to the process has been the willingness of veterans to work with young players, something Manning said he takes particularly seriously.

"I think you have to put the work in," Manning said, citing offseason passing work he has done with players such as rookie tight end Brody Eldridge. "He's going to play a role in the offense this year. I think you have (to) spend the time with him. You have to watch some film with him. You have to go out and throw with him.

"What I've always liked to do is instead of going out and throwing with three quarterbacks and 10 receivers, I'd rather just take me and one receiver and go out and have truly one-on-one throwing where you might throw 30 routes and you're talking about the route beforehand. You're really trying to reach and get him on the same page with you. . . .

"I like that because it keeps the older guys like me and (center) Jeff (Saturday) and (kicker Adam) Vinatieri feeling young, but at the same time, when you bring in new players it means you're going to have to work even harder to bring those guys up to speed and get timing down."

08-11-2010, 09:16 AM
I love it.

duke dynamite
08-11-2010, 10:56 AM
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08-11-2010, 12:16 PM
This is after he threw Jay Culter into the pool before Cutler could remove his glucose monitor (which can't get wet) to haze him at the Pro Bowl.

I'm not saying that really it was a big deal to accidentally haze a diabetic, but I also don't buy the high-and-mighty "we don't haze because we're such swell people" nonsense either.

PS, this is like the time that Pippen said Chuck Person had no class because he punted the ball into the stands of the Chicago Stadium after getting ejected... and then a few years later on national television Pippen punted the ball into the stands. I don't care if either of them punted the ball into the stands. But keep your mouth shut or you'll look foolish!! Same for this. Haze a rookie or pro bowler or don't haze them. I don't care. But keep your mouth shut or you'll look foolish!!

08-11-2010, 12:26 PM
I give the credit to Tony Dungy for the clamp down on no hazing.

08-11-2010, 12:29 PM
This is after he threw Jay Culter into the pool before Cutler could remove his glucose monitor (which can't get wet) to haze him at the Pro Bowl.

I get what you're saying, but I think it's a different situation. That was during a meaningless Pro Bowl with a bunch of guys that he only gets to play with once a year. He doesn't have to take a real serious approach to those games and act like a little kid. That's his time where he gets to have fun.

The Colts though, that's his job. Everything he does, along with everything the rest of the players do, have a correlating effect on the team. It's straight business. As soon as any rookie player comes in, he's with them on the field throwing routes, working on audibles, developing a general rhythm and feel for that guy. I remember he had Garcon and Collie in town a week before the first Rookie Mini-Camp working on stuff and he I believe also attended the rookie mini-camp to work with Collie even more. He wants whoever is brought in to come in and immediately get to work. Can't be doing that when you're too busy making a rookie drive out to get donuts. Peyton has said that he wants guys to come in and immediately feel like they are part of the team, and I think rookie hazing would be counter-productive to that.

08-11-2010, 12:37 PM
Sure. But he's not "against hazing" in general. He's against certain forms of hazing.

I just got a laugh out of the irony -- moreso in the thread/ article title than anything else.

08-14-2010, 11:09 PM
:bs:Bla bla Bla, the Colts are better than the Steelers, and Manning is better than Rothlisberger.:devil:

08-17-2010, 11:55 PM
I guess it is hazing in a way. They hand them that 4 inch thick playbook and say know it all by training camp and they expect them to know it like the vets.