Here's the reality: Some teams don't just play for championships, they play to be the best there has ever been. Others are just satisfied with doing what's required. The Colts decided that resting is more important than making a run at history.--Teddy Bruschi ESPN
Yesterday the Colts had a shot at perfection and let it slip through their fingers. There was no reason to tank the game. There was hardly any chance the Jets could win against the Indy front-line players.
I get the arguments for resting the players. What if someone gets hurt, blah blah. If that is the concern then the starters should have been picking splinters for weeks now. Why are they playing a half at all? Look, they get a week off when the playoffs start. They can rest then, plus they just had ten days between games. I agree with the decision to hold out any injured player. That is smart, but to take out your best healthy players? That is not trying to win, that smacks of "I hope we don't lose".
The decision to rest the starters makes the come-from behind and hard-fought games the past few weeks a waste of time. The team is paid to win.
Here is a conspiracy theory for you. Had the Jets lost, there would be no team in the playoffs from NY, Chicago, LA, Houston or Miami -- some of the largest markets in the Country. The owners share TV revenue. It is in the owner's best interest to have lots of people watching the games. Did some of the owners put pressure on Colts owner Jim Irsay to rest his players? Not to lose on purpose, mind you, but to give the Jets a chance to win?
I do not pretend to have one-one millionth the football knowledge of the Colts management. I do know that the past two times they rested players, they were knocked out of the playoffs. The time they played through the end of the season they won the Superbowl. Pundits always talk about that team that goes into the playoffs on a roll as the team to beat. Recent Superbowls uphold that maxim (Pittsburgh, Arizona, Indy, The Giants,New England, etc,). Who was the last team to win the Superbowl entering the playoffs with a two game losing streak?