Indianapolis Colts: What to Look for in Week 17 Matchup with Jacksonville

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The Indianapolis Colts may be one of the hottest football teams in the league right now. They finally have things clicking on offense, the defense is playing better than they ever have and even the special teams are playing their hearts out. With all of that being said, many are questioning what to expect Sunday when the Colts host the Jacksonville Jaguars in Lucas Oil Stadium for the regular season finale.

Will they rest their starters?

Can they move up in the playoff seeding?

Does the game even matter?

No, yes and yes.

The Colts aren’t going to rest their starters Sunday. The reason is due to the second question–they can move up in the seeding process.

If the New England Patriots and/or the Cincinnati Bengals lose Sunday, then Indianapolis moves up in the seeding. Unfortunately like the Colts, both teams have home games in their finales.

If New England loses to the Buffalo Bills, but the Bengals beat the Baltimore Ravens, then Indianapolis moves up to the third seed and will face either the Ravens, Miami Dolphins or the San Diego Chargers in the Wild Card Round.

If the Bengals lose but New England wins, then Indianapolis will remain the three seed facing the Ravens in the opening round.

But, if both teams lose, then Indianapolis moves up to the second seed and earns a first round bye in the playoffs. That’s why it can’t rest its starters. It can go out with a win and hope for help.

Unfortunately though, if both teams do in fact win, then it doesn’t matter what the Colts do. They will be the four seed and face a rematch with Sunday’s opponent, the Kansas City Chiefs.

Eric Smith is the Colts Beat Writer for Rant Sports. He’s covered the team the past four seasons and is recognized as an accredited member of the media by the Colts. Follow him on Twitter @ericsportsguru


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