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Caldwell: Colts will play starters this week

The NFL Network and every AFC team competing for a Wild Card spot just got an early Christmas present.

Colts coach Jim Caldwell said at his press conference Monday in no uncertain terms that the team would treat this Thursday’s game against Jacksonville “exactly” like the previous thirteen.

“We’re going to play ball and approach it like we do every week,” Caldwell said. “The only thing that will deter anyone from playing time is a health issue.”

Caldwell didn’t appear to be leaving himself wiggle room by mentioning the health issue.  He was clear throughout his press conference he wanted to “maintain rhythm” by continuing to play to win.

We suspect that the Colts organization didn’t adopt this approach because they were reading Florio. The  Colts have traditionally rested starters early, but they have never clinched homefield advantage with three full games remaining. 

Starting to rest now would mean five weeks between meaningful games.  Caldwell wouldn’t promise anything about next week’s game.

“That’s all I’m going to deal with is this week.  I’m not going to look beyond this game.  That’s served us well,” Caldwell said.

Even if it only lasts another week, Caldwell’s decision also serves the league well. 

The NFL Network game is far more attractive now, and the Jaguars won’t get a competitive advantage over other playoff contenders.

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18 Responses to “Caldwell: Colts will play starters this week”
  1. leatherneck says: Dec 14, 2009 2:01 PM

    That’s not really a Christmas present for the Jaguars, an AFC team competing for a wild card spot.
    Jags win anyway. 19-15.

  2. Phyxsius says: Dec 14, 2009 2:02 PM

    The Colts have traditionally rested starters early, but they have never clinched homefield advantage with three full games remaining.
    ____
    Yes, they did. In 2005. They had everything clinched at 13-0. Then they played the Chargers in week 15 and lost.

  3. Asswipe Johnson (Pronounced Az-Wee-Pay) says: Dec 14, 2009 2:03 PM

    Five head and crew are fantasy relevant for at least another week.

  4. cleanface says: Dec 14, 2009 2:08 PM

    They clinched in 2005 after 13 games but played everyone in Game 14 and lost.

  5. edge1919 says: Dec 14, 2009 2:35 PM

    Dear fellow football enjoyers,
    This news makes me happy. I don’t want them to sit their starting football players. I want them to start their starting football players and play very hard and try to beat their foe.
    I can not understand why they won’t bring Edgerrin James back for this run. He is still better than anyone that they have at the running back position who runs the ball.
    If they did this I would be happy and I would say so.

  6. BleedGreen says: Dec 14, 2009 3:01 PM

    edge1919 says:
    December 14, 2009 2:35 PM
    Dear fellow football enjoyers,
    This news makes me happy. I don’t want them to sit their starting football players. I want them to start their starting football players and play very hard and try to beat their foe.
    I can not understand why they won’t bring Edgerrin James back for this run. He is still better than anyone that they have at the running back position who runs the ball.
    If they did this I would be happy and I would say so.
    ——————————-
    With the name Edge1919, I have to say: “Edgerrin? Is that you?”

  7. LiPo says: Dec 14, 2009 3:02 PM

    This resting starters is the most idiotic thing ever.
    Particularly if you are getting a first round bye.
    Give me chemistry, rhythm, and momentum any day over rest unless people are really banged up.

  8. phailing101 says: Dec 14, 2009 3:05 PM

    Woo hoo! Go Colts!
    Lets give those ’72 Dolphins something to worry about!

  9. Stinson says: Dec 14, 2009 3:12 PM

    Good news for Titans fans.

  10. goJags says: Dec 14, 2009 3:23 PM

    Not a good news for the Jags. Let the better team on that day win.

  11. ocpaperboy says: Dec 14, 2009 3:53 PM

    We are playing all the starters on Thursday because that’s what I told Caldwell to do. He always listens to me.
    Signed,
    Peyton Manning

  12. Beastie Bills says: Dec 14, 2009 4:13 PM

    So I can start Joseph Addai in my fantasy league next week?

  13. Quantum88 says: Dec 14, 2009 5:21 PM

    For those of you who remember, in 2005 when the Colts last went 13-0, they lost in week 14 to the Chargers. But, they didn’t play their starters the whole game. In fact, I think that Manning only played 2 series in the game.

  14. bjkreezy says: Dec 14, 2009 6:10 PM

    Beastie Bills says: December 14, 2009 4:13 PM
    So I can start Joseph Addai in my fantasy league next week?
    No!! Jo will play with limited carries and that’s if he plays at all

  15. The Genius says: Dec 14, 2009 6:18 PM

    I still think any team at 13-0 would try to go undefeated. They are only trying to play the whole thing down because they have a big enough bullseye on their backs already.

  16. blackngold says: Dec 14, 2009 6:32 PM

    Caldwell: Colts will play starters this week
    Shouldn’t that read:
    Caldwell: Colts will start players this week

  17. TonyArmstrong says: Dec 14, 2009 6:34 PM

    Excellent news for Ravens fans! Go Colts…

  18. fanofthecolts says: Dec 15, 2009 1:01 PM

    I am glad to see Caldwell making this call. You know, in the end the NFL is an entertainment enterprise, and like any other entertainment enterprise, you owe it to your customers to provided the very best product and experience every time you put on your “show”. It’s just not fair to the fans, the sponsors, the other teams, or anyone else to intentionally put out an inferior product in any week. Fans pay good money to watch the “stars” play every week, and to deny the Jacksonville fans the chance to see one of the greatest QBs of all time in person isn’t even fair to them.
    I would like to see the league adopt a policy that says that every team has a responsibility to try every week to win the game. Anything less is just promoting an inferior product!

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