Super Bowl: Colts enjoying the ride

Published 12:00 am Saturday, January 27, 2007

Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Colts have waited too long for this moment to rush things.

Sure, the week after the AFC championship game has been go-go-go for the players, and there’s still another long week to go before they hit the field for the Super Bowl against the Chicago Bears. But they’d rather be bombarded with text messages, e-mails and endless streams of phone calls than be making their usual plans — setting up Super Bowl parties at home.

“I’m soaking it up, man,” safety Bob Sanders said. “You could say, ‘We need to just hurry up and get to the game.’ This moment, you’re going to remember forever. You don’t want it to go by so fast that we’re like ‘What was I doing, what was I thinking about?’ You want to soak up every minute, every day.”

Past disappointments for the Colts have given them perspective on their accomplishment. The Colts were expected to reach the Super Bowl last season but lost their first playoff game at home to the Pittsburgh Steelers, then watched the Steelers win the championship.

This year, the Colts beat the New England Patriots 38-34 in the AFC championship after losing to the Patriots in the playoffs after the 2003 and 2004 seasons. Now that they’re finally going to the big game, even long-lost family members can’t take the shine off their experience.

“It’s been fun,” center Jeff Saturday said. “It’s something you don’t want to complain about because you’re blessed to even be here. It’s hectic. There’s a lot of chaos going on.”

Saturday said the biggest challenge has been setting things up for family members to travel to Miami.

“My wife and I tried to get it done early in the week so we knew what we had,” Saturday said. “We’re done from here. Once people get down there, it’s up to them to have fun. For me and my family, it’s about winning this game.”

Some Colts, like defensive end Raheem Brock, have enlisted help in handling the barrage of attention. He has a cousin who takes care of his messages.

“It’s been crazy,” Brock said. “I can’t even handle my calls. I’ve got people calling me that I haven’t talked to in 10 years. I don’t know how they got my phone number or e-mail address, but they got in touch with me somehow.”