Chuck Pagano says Colts won’t rest starters


The Colts don’t have much to play for in Weeks 16 and 17. They’ve already clinched the AFC South, but they’re highly unlikely to catch the Patriots or Broncos to earn a first-round bye.

So will they rest their starters in the next two games? Nope.

Colts coach Chuck Pagano says he doesn’t believe in resting starters at the end of the season. When reporters asked him today if Andrew Luck should get some time off for the last two games, Pagano seemed surprised by the suggestion.

“To sit him? Why?” Pagano said. “You could walk out of this building and get run over tonight. You know what I mean. You’ve got to live. You go tell him. That’s the way he is. We’ve got to make decisions, do the right thing and protect guys from themselves in the right situation. But we’re going to try to win a football game and we’re going to play.”

Pagano noted that the Colts had nothing to play for in Week 17 two years ago but still played their players in the finale.

“No, we could have done that in 2012. We’re going to play them all,” Pagano said. “Try to win them all because you never know what’s going to happen. All we can control is what we can control, and we can control how we go play on Sunday. I don’t what’s going to happen with the rest of the division and the conference. We’re going to do everything we can to give ourselves the best possible chance in the playoffs.”

The Colts, more than any other franchise, have rested starters late in seasons in the past — even eschewing a chance at a perfect season in 2009 by sitting Peyton Manning in the final two games after starting 14-0. But that was before Pagano arrived, and Pagano says that’s not how he does things.

“We have a philosophy and we’re going to stick with that philosophy. I’m not worried about anybody else’s philosophy. There’s nothing wrong with anybody’s thinking. Everybody’s different. There’s a lot of ways to skin a cat,” Pagano said.

Colts fans generally panned the team’s decision to rest Manning after locking up a playoff position, so they should be pleased with Pagano’s approach. Just as long as Luck doesn’t get hurt.

25 responses to “Chuck Pagano says Colts won’t rest starters

  1. As a cowboys fan I really hope they change their mind like maybe luck looks limpy after a play (obviously I don’t hope he gets actually injured it’s just a game after all) and convinces Chuck to pull his starters.

    Either that or the players don’t take the game as seriously but good teams rarely mail it in.

  2. If they did rest Pagano wouldnt be able to venture within 100 miles of Philly.

    Regardless, I think resting starters has the possibility of backfiring in the playoffs.

  3. That shameful disgrace when they quit after 14-0 in 2009 is the reason why Goodell implemented the only good thing of his tenure: making the last week or two division games, to help increase the stakes. Trying to take pressure off of Peyton of a possible undefeated season didn’t stop him from choking again. It was karma from the football gods.

  4. Tom coughlin forever changed that line of thinking. If you’re a coach who does that now, you’re plain dumb

  5. Colts fan here. Let’s be honest. Indy has played four decent teams and lost decisively to all of them: Broncos; Eagles; Steelers; Patriots. They were embarrassed by New England and Pittsburgh. They have no match up for Dez Bryant. They can’t stop the run. They can’t run the ball (unless Herron is in the backfield). They struggled to beat the Browns and the Texans, both teams with bad quarterbacks. If the Colts were not playing in the AFC South they would be in serious jeopardy of even making it to the playoffs. Indy needs to play everybody who is healthy Sunday, with the exception of Wayne. They need desperately to play…and win…a meaningful road game in December. If they lay down Sunday in Dallas, they’re one-and-done in the playoffs.

  6. It’s pretty much the same as asking if all the non-playoff teams are gonna rest their starters so they’re not hurt to start next year. You should try to win every single game. Building the winning attitude and trying to win every game is how you win championships.

  7. As a Cowboys fan you don’t know much about the playoffs.

    redfield11 says:
    Dec 15, 2014 6:17 PM
    As a cowboys fan I really hope they change their mind like maybe luck looks limpy after a play (obviously I don’t hope he gets actually injured it’s just a game after all) and convinces Chuck to pull his starters.

    Either that or the players don’t take the game as seriously but good teams rarely mail it in.

  8. I agree with justintuckrule that the reason the Giants beat the 18-0 Patriots is because they gave the final game, a supposedly meaningless game for the Giants, all their effort. I’ve thought for years that resting your starters from ‘meaningless’ games for the playoffs reduces the players’ focus and intensity, and doesn’t bode well for playoff success.

    It’s pretty easy to point fingers if someone gets hurt, hindsight is 20/20. But I absolutely hate the concept of resting healthy players from ‘meaningless’ games. There aren’t really any ‘meaningless’ games.

  9. @Steelers are Superior

    As you look back on this season watching the playoffs in your parents basement with your dad telling you and your 2 other loser friends how the Steelers used to be a big deal a few decades ago, just remember that if it wasn’t for the loss’s to Tampa “freakin” Bay and to the J.E.T.S. your team might have made the playoffs this year. It must be heart breaking to not make the playoffs because your team lost to 2 of the worst teams in the NFL? Better luck next year loser.

  10. The Steelers scored 51….I also believe they lost at home to the Bucaneers!! Might want to keep your mouth shut!! Anyone that claims to be a Colts fan, and doesn’t think Vontae Davis has the ability to cover Dez Bryant, would have to be the most negative fan I have ever ran into. The Colts D line has performed rather well as of late, and they are 10th in the league in sacks (much improved over last year at pressuring the QB). I don’t The truth of the matter, they have played all of the current AFC playoff teams and are 2-3, with only one of those losses coming at home. I don’t expect them to go on the road and beat New England or Denver, but if people are this down on a 10-4 team, then your expectations may be a little lofty!!

  11. Yes, the Colts were whipped by the Steelers and the Patriots. Bad play calling got them beat by the Eagles. Played decently the second half against Denver in a loss which was the first game of the year. Fact is, everyone has bad losses. Colts need to get hot and get their offense in gear. Their defense is playing really well.

  12. The NFL wants them to talk like they are trying to win the game even when we know they want to come out with injuries.

    Did the Colts honestly appear to be trying to win that game. Down 35-0 to Dallas who has a less than average offense?

  13. “So will they rest their starters in the next two games? Nope.”

    OK, so maybe they started, but they sure as hell didn’t give much of an effort. You can’t trust anything the coach says. It’s not his job to help your fantasy team.

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