For Pierre Garçon and Ryan Kerrigan, this week's trip to Indianapolis represents their first-ever Hoosier Homecomings as members of the Washington Redskins.
For Garçon, Sunday's game against the Indianapolis Colts is his first game against the team that took a chance on the Division III wide receiver in the sixth round of the 2008 NFL Draft.
Garçon played in Indianapolis from 2008 to 2011, and made marked improvements each season. In all, he played in 58 games with the Colts, starting 43, and caught 188 passes for 2,519 yards and 16 touchdowns.
He said he also learned what it was like to win in the NFL with the Colts, who were 76-26 and appeared in Super Bowl XLIV during his four seasons in Indy.
"A lot of great memories in Indy," Garçon told Redskins.com this week. "Won a lot of games in Indy, grew up in Indy – good times. Great times."
The Colts' organization has undergone many changes since Garçon played there. Gone are guys like general manager Bill Polian, quarterback Peyton Manning, wide receiver Marvin Harrison, tight end Dallas Clark and center Jeff Saturday, but Garçon said this weekend's trip will still be an opportunity to reflect on those who "gave me an opportunity to make something out of myself."
One mainstay from Garçon's time with the Colts is veteran receiver Reggie Wayne, a six-time Pro Bowler who has 50 receptions for 605 yards and two touchdowns this season for Indianapolis.
"It was Bill Polian who gave me an opportunity, and I had a great time working with Peyton (Manning) and Reggie (Wayne), Marvin (Harrison), Dallas (Clark), Jeff Saturday and those guys, watching them and how they work," Garçon said. "It was the perfect situation for me. They gave me the perfect opportunity, and I'm definitely appreciative. Shoot – that's why I'm here now."
Kerrigan, meanwhile, never played for the Colts, but he grew up cheering for them from his hometown of Muncie, Ind. – a mere 45-mile drive from the Circle City.
The Muncie Central High School product went on star at Purdue, which is an hour drive up Interstate 65 from Indianapolis. He said he's "pretty excited" for Sunday's game against the Colts.
"It's going to be pretty cool," Kerrigan said. "I have a lot of friends, a lot of family coming, got my old high school football coaches coming, so I'm really excited. I really want the Redskins to put on a good show."
Kerrigan – who leads the Redskins with 8.5 sacks this season, tying a career-high – acknowledged several friends and family members might find themselves conflicted on Sunday, when their favorite team in blue and white takes on their hometown product in burgundy and gold.
But those 40 or so people who received tickets from Kerrigan have already been warned, he said.
"I made it pretty clear: either you're with me or you're against me," Kerrigan said with a smile. "If I'm getting you tickets, you're not going to be cheering for both the Colts and Kerrigan -- you're going to cheer for the Redskins."