The League

Dawn Knight

Dawn Knight

The author of Taliaferro: Breaking Barriers and a high school English teacher.

I'd rather play to win


My husband and I went to the Colts game yesterday. There was nothing at stake; win or lose, the Colts would have home field advantage in the playoffs. We went anyway, because it looked like the starters were going to be playing. It looked like Caldwell was going for the perfect season. The roof of Lucas Oil Stadium was closed, but we could see the snow falling through the windows. It was a beautiful night to watch the Colts go 14 and 0.

The Colts had already established home field advantage for the playoffs and didn't need to risk injury to starters. But the same was true last week, and the starters played anyway. It seemed Caldwell was playing to win, and we fans were on board with the plan.

For almost three quarters, yesterday, that still seemed to be the plan. The starters were in, and the Colts were winning. The Colts were going for 15 and 0. That is until Curtis Painter walked onto the field in the third quarter, and his fumble ended up in the hands of a Jets player in the Indianapolis end zone.

Colts fans started booing. It's not something one hears in Indy very often. We're usually good sports. I hope Painter doesn't take it personally. They were booing the decision not to win, not Painter. Manning appeared to be frustrated by that decision as well. His helmet left on, he seemed to be indicating a desire to go back in the game. He wanted to play, wanted to win. (Unlike Favre, though, Manning wouldn't put his ego before the team. During the post-game press conference Manning was supportive of Caldwell's decision. I wouldn't have expected otherwise.)

Our cries of "We want Manning!" went unheeded. Painter remained in the game, and the Colts lost. We'll get over it. After all, the playoffs are coming up, and Caldwell is without question a good coach. Yesterday, we were just feeling pretty slighted. We wanted to go for it. Our disappointment was evident in our grumblings as we filed out of Lucas Oil Stadium and slid across the icy sidewalks to our cars.

By Dawn Knight  |  December 28, 2009; 8:00 AM ET  | Category:  Indianapolis Colts , Peyton Manning Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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