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Something is different…

Something is different this year…

Ok, so maybe a more obvious line was never written.  All the off-season stories about the Colts have focused on change.  Change has been crammed down our throat for months now.  The laundry list of changes (both real and imagined) has led many to close the window on the Colts.

No Dungy!  No Marv! No Moore and Mudd (never mind that they never actually went anywhere)!

No chance.

So when I say, “Something is different this year…”, it would be easy to shrug and move on.

Don’t.  I don’t mean it like everyone else means it.

Like most Colts’ fans, I’ve wholeheartedly embraced the roster moves this off-season.  Anyone can see the Colts are deeper and better at almost every position than last year (except maybe WR, but I’m not convinced that matters as much as most pundits do).  This roster feels like a championship roster…assuming the line comes together.

Beyond a better roster, this camp lacks the high drama uncertainty of last year’s.  A year ago, the Colts opened with Manning and Freeney nursing injuries.  This year is different.  The core players on both offense and defense are in camp, healthy and ready to roll.

This year’s team doesn’t enter camp as a division champion and unquestioned bully of the South.

No, something is different this year.

Reggie Wayne’s stunt yesterday would be easy to dismiss as theater, but it speaks volumes.  The more I think about it, the more excited I get.  Today, the lead story could have been, “Star wide receiver bemoans lack of respect”.  It could have been all about how Reggie Wayne doesn’t think the Colts get enough credit, or how offended he is that people think the loss of Harrison will be too much to overcome.

Instead, the lead story rippling through the locker room and Colts nation is “Reggie Wayne says: We’ve got to get to work!”.  That beats the hell out of, “When will Peyton Manning practice?” or “Will Dwight Freeney ever be a Pro Bowl player again”.

No Dungy, no Marv.  No problem.  The Horse is going to work.

Things are going to be different in 2009.

I couldn’t be happier.