At a special press conference on Thursday, March 7, Jeff Saturday will officially retire as a member of the Indianapolis Colts. His career spanned 14 seasons, 13 of which were in Indianapolis. He played last season for the Green Bay Packers, but was released following their playoff loss to the San Francisco 49ers.
For the next few days, media will begin the process of framing Saturday's career. Is he a Hall of Famer? Is he one of the most important labor representatives the NFLPA ever had?
One thing we do know, via a quick tweet from Indianapolis Star columnist Bob Kravitz - who will be posting an article about Saturday tomorrow, just in time for the presser - is that Saturday's only career regret was not going for the perfect season in 2009.
Just to whet your appetite for the Jeff Saturday column to come later, he said his only career regret was not pursuing the perfect season.— BobKravitz (@bkravitz) March 6, 2013
Yes, we all remember Week 16, 2009. Indy was 14-0 entering that game, which was the last home game of the regular season. We remember the lame excuses and contradictory justifications for why Jim Caldwell decided to rest starters during the third quarter of a very winnable game against the New York Jets. We remember Bill Polian berating fans during his own call-in radio show. We remember the Football Gods enacting swift justice during the Super Bowl that year, when a heavily-favored Colts team lost to the Saints thanks in large part to a genius onside kick to start the second half.
For me, I remember meeting and talking to Jeff Saturday during Media Day for that Super Bowl. I remember him telling me back then that he was still unhappy that they had rested starters. I remember him saying this while other members of that 2009 team, such as Kelvin Hayden and Peyton Manning, touted the company line over and over, saying it's all about Super Bowls and not perfect seasons.
It will be interesting to read what else Saturday has to stay about that 2009 season.