Philip Rivers has yet to take a practice snap with the Colts, but he’s already exerting his influence on his new team.
That’s taken some getting used to for the Colts, as they go through an offseason of Zoom meetings with a new quarterback.
“I feel like I’ve got to know him,” wide receiver T.Y. Hilton said of Rivers, via Mike Wells of ESPN.com. “I mean, he’s already taken control of meetings. So he’s asking questions, knowing the terminology. He’s been in this offense — just some things we’ve changed up with different names. So he’s just getting those things down, and once he gets those down, he’ll be ready to go.”
The familiarity with coach Frank Reich is what led him to Indianapolis, after 16 seasons with the Chargers.
But that familiarity doesn’t extend to players, who are learning to hear Rivers’ voice in meetings. He’ll be the fifth quarterback center Ryan Kelly has snapped to since 2016, and that means learning his speech patterns, as he goes through play calls during their meetings.
“Obviously, Phil has a very different verbal cadence than what I’m used to, but that’s football, man,” Kelly said. “That’s the way it is. We’re getting paid as professionals to figure it out. There are going to be some learning curves for sure, but as soon as we can get out on the field or even if it’s just Phil and I sitting down and running through a few things, I think it’s really going to help out.
“We’re doing everything that we can to get live reps. If you visualize it enough, it will come over time to get used to it. As far as down to the cadence and his presence in the huddle, it’s obviously going to be paramount that we get that down. I think we’re doing a good job.”
Reich said Rivers would be in Indianapolis “sooner rather than later,” and was planning to work with his new targets once he gets there. Until then, they’re going to have to get to know him virtually.
Colts say Philip Rivers has “taken control” of meetings originally appeared on Pro Football Talk