Coach Frank Reich met with his new team today for the first time. This week begins the off-season training program. These are the early days when the new offense and defense will be put in and the learning process begins. We are all excited to see that Andrew Luck is in Indy as promised a few weeks ago. We heard his words that he feels 100% that he will be ready for training camp. That’s great news. However today Coach Reich delivered his message to a room full of players that he has never coached and they have never played for either.
Coach Reich kept his message simple. Trust. Toughness. Teamwork. Those are Coach Reich’s keys to building a winning team and a winning culture. Now it does sound like something Chuck Pagano consistently said year in and year out while he was here in Indy. The only difference is I believe Coach Reich will do everything he humanly can do to make that a reality instead of just words written on a chalkboard. These aren’t sound bites for the media to use. This is how Coach Reich feels he and his team will succeed. Trust. Toughness. Teamwork.
When Reich took the job he said his team would be the toughest on the field. Most of think of that in a physical sense. Like bigger, stronger, faster than the other team right? Well Coach Reich sees it as this, ” It’s a relentless drive to get better everyday, and it’s an obsession to finish.” That’s an amazing definition of toughness to me. It has nothing to do with the physicality of toughness but everything to do with mental toughness. Coach Reich’s vision is coming clearer to me now.
He doesn’t want 22 blockheads to run out on the field for offense and defense and just beat the hell out of someone. No. He wants his team to be ready mentally to be able to reach down in their guts to find that last yard needed or tackle made. He wants them to believe and TRUST in one another that they each will do their jobs. I don’t think this is something that has been instilled in players since Tony Dungy was here.
I am becoming more of a fan of Frank Reich’s every time I hear him talk. Now I won’t believe everything he is selling right away. I did that with the last coach and by God I won’t do it again. However, if Coach Reich is able to take this team and building an amazing culture with filled with Trust, Toughness and Team Work then I think we have a winner ladies and gentlemen. Time will tell if these players will buy what Reich is selling or if they will just see him as another coach who just tries to motivate his players but not actually coach them. The Colts organization just got rid of a motivational speaker. They need a coach who does more than talk. They need a coach who will lay the plan out and tell his players this is what we are doing. If you’re not in then get the hell out now.
I think Frank Reich is that guy.