Jeff Saturday not benching any offensive linemen: “Our job is to coach them to be better”

Philadelphia Eagles v Indianapolis Colts
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The Colts’ offensive line has not played well this season, and if there’s one position new interim head coach Jeff Saturday is qualified to coach, it’s the offensive line. But Saturday says he won’t be benching any of the under-performing players.

Saturday said that he remembers his own Colts coaches, Tony Dungy and Jim Caldwell, being more interested in making players better than in getting rid of them.

“I think it was Dungy or Caldwell who used to say it’s always easy to fire guys, but who are you hiring? If the guys are having a hard time, our job is to coach them to be better, and to be the players that we know they can be,” Saturday said. “These guys, the effort is there, the technique is getting there, they’re getting better every week, and I think you continue to get better each week as you get reps and you get activity.”

Specifically regarding the much-maligned rookie left tackle Bernhard Raimann, Saturday said people notice the sacks he gives up but not some good plays he has made that have been overlooked.

“Offensive linemen, you’re never gonna be highlighted for the good that you do,” Saturday said. “And there’s some really good plays that he has, and there’s some things that he does exceptionally well that will never get noticed. But you’re always gonna get noticed for your negative plays. No different than a defensive back, right? When it’s bad, everybody knows, when it’s good it’s a play that nobody cares about. But just to have that mental toughness to understand we are getting better, your technique is getting better, your confidence in yourself is growing each and every week, and to keep taking that challenge on and go meet that expectation that we set for you.”

At this point in the season, the Colts won’t be able to make significant improvement in their offensive line talent. They just need the players they have to play better, and Saturday thinks that can happen.

22 responses to “Jeff Saturday not benching any offensive linemen: “Our job is to coach them to be better”

  1. You know, I’m starting to think maybe Irsay wasn’t as off his rocker as I thought he was.

  2. Less Vince Lombardi, more Laurel and Hardy. Saturday should write a book on ‘how to start at the top’.

  3. Problem is not only this year, it was already the case last year. Everyone was throwing Wentz under the bus but look at the “protection” he got, especially in this Jaguars game that sealed his fate

  4. I think if Saturday can accomplish making his players better, and they respond, then Irsay has nailed it as an owner. Saturday’s hiring could be a great example to the entire NFL.

  5. Not saying good coaching and patience doesn’t make a difference. Look at the Eagles offensive line. Mailata was a 7th round project but he had tons of raw talent. It took him several years to get where he is now. Which he learned on the bench. Not all linemen are destined to be starters or immediate starters.

  6. Saturday also has a quarterback accustomed to poor line play which can keep them in a game while hopefully he can make them better.

  7. So far so good for Saturday. I don’t know anything about his coaching technique but he’s definitely a leader of men.

  8. It is amazing the narrative one game can provide.

    If the Colts beat the Jaguars in Week 18 and got blown out in the playoffs, people would still say that was a successful year for Indy and that Wentz was the guy moving forward.

    Had the Chargers beat the Raiders that same day it would have been universally agreed that it was time to move on from Derek Carr, and yet one win and an early playoff exit and he gets a big extension.

  9. Sometimes the HC just needs to be able to inspire his players. Not be the brain for all aspects of the game. That’s what all his position and assistant coaches and coordinators are for. Sure, Saturday has to be responsible for the overall direction and plan but needs to rely on his coaches as well.

  10. So many desperate fans wishing and hoping for success from a team full of cheerleaders with mediocre talent and a drunken owner. Sad, but funny, too.

  11. Do you not coach QBs? He is right in the sense this isn’t fantasy football. Honestly though, this is still Reich’s coaches who will all be fired next month. Reich didn’t have Taylor for his last game either. The offense is about the same overall which is not very good. Let’s not crown Saturday yet.

  12. It is almost unfair that Jeff Saturday and his offensive line have to match wits with defensive genius Mike Tomlin on Monday. Almost. GO STEELERS!

  13. Is pointing out the obvious supposed to be an impressive statement about Saturday?
    Players who rarely have the ball in their hands get noticed for the mistakes they make. Because that’s when they draw attention to themselves, by failing to do what they were supposed. They’re supposed to be the faceless men that make the offence/defence function and are who most viewers ignore during a play. Whether you’re a lineman who whiffs on a block or a corner who blows his cover assignment, their errors are when they become visible.
    Whereas ‘skilled’ players who handle the ball have their mistakes front and centre with each errant throw, bad drop, missed running hole, or fumble. When they screw up, the cameras are already focused on them.
    What Saturday says here is just a mushy/sentimental restatement of the Belichickian mantra of “Do Your Job.”

  14. And the bears are an NFC north basement dwelling joke for years with a joke of an owner. Even the lions own them. The clown bears fanbase actually think Justin fields is a real QB is the comical thing about it. Enjoy Arlington heights hahahah

  15. Say what you want about not having any coaching experience, but the guy knows football. The guy knows how to handle people and put responsibility where it belongs. Leadership counts more for a head coach than Xs and Os most times. Good leaders hire good coaches to execute their overall vision and hold them accountable for getting the job done.

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