Now that the Indianapolis Colts are in the playoffs and have clinched the fifth seed, there’s no need to play the starters much next weekend at home against division rival the Houston Texans. The Texans lost to the Minnesota Vikings 23-6 today and now are faced with a must win scenario against the Colts to get homefield advantage in the AFC for the duration of the playoffs.
The Colts have nothing to play for which means it’s time for much needed rest for the starters to rejuvenate them for a Super Bowl run.
The Texans are a fierce competitor and have bruisers on both side of the football. With them having homefield to play for why risk your starters at injury when they can rest up and enjoy the day?
The Colts have been banged up on both sides of the football all year and don’t need to get worse. Both the second and third string running back’s are out for the Colts which just leaves rookie Vick Ballard as the lone healthy back. Don’t expect them to play Ballard much past the first quarter next Sunday.
Then, look at how banged up the offensive line has been. They definitely need to get healthy so look for all back ups to play on the line against Houston. With that being said, why put your rookie franchise quarterback behind them when he’s been taking hits all year? Expect to see a lot of Drew Stanton past the first couple of possessions as the Colts are sure to give Andrew Luck tons of rest so he doesn’t get banged up. With the starting unit in last week at Houston Luck was sacked five times. Why leave him in to take more hits when it’s not necessary?
Then on the defensive side of the ball, the Colts have had tons of injuries. I don’t expect Dwight Freeney, Robert Mathis, or Cory Redding to play much past the first possession if at all. The secondary has been banged up so don’t expect to see many of those stars as well.
If you have a ticket to the game next week don’t expect to see much action and the starters. Don’t get mad though because this team deserves this and needs it. An extra week to rest and rejuvenate their focus could be all this team needs at a Super Bowl run.