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Conference Call: Colts Interim Head Coach Bruce Arians

Posted Dec 5, 2012

COLTS INTERIM HEAD COACH BRUCE ARIANS

(on what he sees out of Jake Locker on tape)

He’s a very athletic guy. I really liked him coming out of college. He’s really worked on his accuracy. He can make every throw. I think it’s a learning process for him, like all young quarterbacks. He looks like he’s a guy you can build around.

(on preparation for Jake Locker versus Matt Hasselbeck)

You have a different style quarterback. You better be in your rush lanes. He can pull it down and go get a first down with his legs. Matt (Hasselbeck) at one time could do that too, but not lately. The bigger thing too is the change at offensive coordinator, only having one game to break down the playcalling and how their philosophy might have changed. It poses a big problem for our defense right now.

(on if he noticed different playcalling in the Titans’ game against Houston)

It’s hard to pin in on one game, that’s the thing. You really need a four to five game situational breakdown to see exactly all the numbers so that they add up for you. Right now, it’s all hit and miss. It has to be different, or they wouldn’t have made a change.

(on if he knows Dowell Loggains)

No, I do not.

(on what Andrew Luck has been doing well in clutch situations)

I think the biggest thing is his poise. He studies the game extremely hard. For whatever reason, that part of the game, the fast-paced part of the game is when the game slows down the best for him. We’ve been better in no-huddle and two-minute than we have been basically in our regular offense a lot of times. I think it’s his poise and his confidence for the situation. He studies the situation. We practice a lot of situational football, a lot of mock situations. He has a great grasp of that and can go out and execute it.

(on if that instinct comes naturally to Andrew Luck)

I think it can be installed. With him, it’s a faster pace that he got it. Most times, it takes a guy two years to go through it and experience it and watch other people go through these certain situations. ‘This is what you’d do in this situation, 2:13 left on the clock, no timeouts. What are you going to do here?’ ‘Well, I’m not going to throw it on the field of play, unless it’s the last play of the game, like it was the other day.’ Make sure all those balls go into the end zone. Little things like that, you can teach and they can learn. You just have to put them in those situations in practice enough times.

(on if Andrew Luck is throwing too many interceptions)

Oh, totally, especially on the road. Most of it is mechanical, he’s not throwing to the wrong areas of the field or the wrong guys. It’s a mechanical situation, where he slid to his left twice and threw a high ball down the right side that got picked twice in that last game and once in New England. It’s something that he works constantly at, is his footwork in the pocket and holding the ball up high. The other interception was completely on the receiver’s part, he broke behind a defender, and cardinal rule, you always break in front of the defender. They both got suckered in by a veteran nickel back. Those are the things that you have to learn. Hopefully they don’t cost you a ball game.

(on his memories of Tom Moore at Indy)

I knew he was going to turn up somewhere. I’ve got a great big picture of him looking over my shoulder. I have Coach Bryant on one side and Tom Moore on the other in my office. There are probably not too many minds that I respect more offensively than Tom Moore’s. I consider him a great friend, and when I saw him down in Jacksonville, he said he wanted to coach again, on his 74th birthday. I said, ‘God bless you. I hope you do.’ He was adamant about it, so I know he’s really happy about it.

(on if he saw Tom Moore in Jacksonville at the Colts/Jaguars game)

Yes.

(on what Tom Moore can bring to an offense)

He’s got a great offensive mind and he’s seen everything. He has a great way of keeping the game extremely simple for a quarterback and the way he presents it. He’s been in just about every kind of offense known to man, so he’s got background in all of them. He can help a young coordinator, he can help a young quarterback, he can help a young tight end. Every position he’s pretty much coached. He’s got a great wealth of knowledge.

(on if Tom Moore has helped the Colts as a consultant this season)

No, he hasn’t worked with us this year.

(on injuries)

Tom Zbikowski missed a game, he will also miss this game. Donald Brown, our running back, will be out this week. We have a couple of guys with concussions that still have to pass their impact test. Everyone else will practice today.

(on how they are finding ways to win)

We’re probably ruining every head coach’s speech for OTA’s. You have to protect the football and you have to protect points. We have the tendency to keep a game close enough throughout our team play, where it be special teams touchdowns or defense holding them, offense scoring enough points to win ball games close. I think once we learn that those two factors right there, the turnover differential, where we start creating some and we start protecting the ball better, we could be a heck of a football team.

(on if guys now expect to win if the score is close)

There’s no doubt, this football team knows at the end that we have a quarterback that can win the game. The defense knew it the other day. Once we got the first touchdown, you could see the fire in their eyes to get the ball back because they knew he could go back and get another one and he delivered. I think once you do it a couple of times, it is infectious, and the guys believe on the sidelines that it’s never over until it’s over.

(on how much Andrew Luck calls protections)

Quite a bit. He has the wherewithal of changing which way we move, who we create Mike and everything else. He has a big deal in handling our protections.

(on if more quarterbacks have taken that on across the league)

Personally, I think it ties the quarterback into everything. I don’t think the center can see what the quarterback can see. When the center depends on the Mike because of safety locations, he gets fooled too many times. The quarterback can see everyone’s body language and everything else. That’s his job. He’s got to know who the Mike is, where the safeties are for him to know his hots and sights. There are a lot of offenses that the center does it because the quarterback doesn’t throw hots or sights, they don’t have them in their offense. I’m not one of those people.

(on if he aspires to be a head coach in the NFL)

You always do. If you’re coaching, that’s one of your goals as long as you’re in the business. When I was a young assistant in college, I wanted to be a head coach in college. Ever since I’ve been in the NFL, I loved to have had a chance. This might be my only chance, and I’ve really had a great time with it. I can’t wait for Chuck (Pagano) to get healthy and get back.

(on if he thinks that a team looking for a quarterback-developing head coach might give him a call)

I don’t know. I think that’s all up to the owners and the general managers at this point in time, what they’re looking for. I’m not going to hold my breath at my age and where I’m at in my career. I’d love to have the opportunity to talk to one, but if it doesn’t happen, I’m cool with it.

(on if he thinks Jake Locker is more dangerous in the pocket or on the move)

I think coming out of school, he was more natural on the move. He was extremely accurate on the move and he made a lot of big plays. From the pocket is where you thought you were going to have to develop him. I think that’s still a natural thing for him to get out and make plays, whether it be running or on the run and throwing. He’s still learning to develop everything within the pocket and getting to the second, third and fourth guy.

 

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