clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Recapping A Pretty Rough Day For The Colts And Jim Caldwell

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - OCTOBER 10: Jim Caldwell of the Indianapolis Colts looks on against the Kansas City Chiefs at Lucas Oil Stadium on October 10, 2010 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  (Photo by Scott Boehm/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - OCTOBER 10: Jim Caldwell of the Indianapolis Colts looks on against the Kansas City Chiefs at Lucas Oil Stadium on October 10, 2010 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Scott Boehm/Getty Images)
Getty Images

Yesterday was, shall we say, a bit of a rough day for the Indianapolis Colts, to say the least. For me, I kind of feel as if they played a game yesterday, and LOST. I think this team had more controversy and more bad news yesterday than they've had since... well, since Week Sixteen last year.

It started early, when news broke of Pat McAfee's drunken dip into the Broadripple Canal and subsequent arrest for public intoxication. This was the fourth alcohol-related arrest involving a Colts player since August. We're now averaging one-per-month. Like it or not, that reflects very poorly on Jim Caldwell. Four arrests in three months NEVER happened under Tony Dungy, and I don't recall them happening under Jim Mora (who is often under-appreciated for being the one to install true discipline with these Colts).

We officially have a discipline problem with these Colts, and such problems always reflect poorly on the head football coach.

I'll give Jim Caldwell credit for this: He's owning up to his failure in getting the 'discipline' message across. He said this yesterday, via John Oehser [emphasis mine]:

It is true that Moala's transgression was worse because he was driving, but Caldwell indicated before the suspension was announced that he believed more had to be done for players to receive the message that such incidents are unacceptable. "It is not necessarily what I’ve done because evidently what we’ve been doing, what I’ve been doing, is not enough," he said ."So, the fact of the matter is we just have to get it straightened out because we have much higher standards than that here." A few hours later, the Colts announced the one-game suspension and it was apparent that that message was being sent.

McAfee's suspension came as a surprise to many of us. But, it sent a message. It sent a message loud and clear. I can guarantee all of you that Mr. Bill Polian is most certainly not a happy person this week. Like many of you, he sees the discipline in this team breaking down both on the field and off.

Sloppy tackling.


Dropped passes.

And now, multiple off-the-field arrests for alcohol-related offenses. In two high profile incidents (McAfee's arrest and John Gill's 'soiled and barefoot' arrest story), they occurred when the Colts were given time off to 'rest.'

Note to Jim Caldwell: These players can 'rest' during the off-season. That's what it's for. Right now, it's about winning friggin' football games. It's pretty evident that this team is not mature enough to handle 'rest' with any moniker of restraint. These players need to sharpen up and get to work, not 'rest.' We fans have seen six weeks of sloppy football and more than enough off-the-field drama. Time to tighten the screws and cut away the dead weight, coach. If you can't do that, then maybe you're the dead weight that needs cutting.

After the jump, we round-up the bad news.

  • Pat McAfee suspended one game by the team for getting arrested for public intoxication. For those of you wondering why 'public intoxication' is something you can get arrested for, kindly consult Indiana state law. In Indiana, public intoxication is a class B misdemeanor, punishable with up to 180 days in jail, and a $1000 dollar fine. By getting suspended, this forces the Colts to sign a part-time punter and possible kick-off specialist for, at least, one game.
  • Dallas Clark has an injured left wrist and is out 'indefinitely.' We posted a link to a Twitter rumor from NBC Affiliate employee Mike Hoke saying he'd heard Clark was injured and done for the season. Turns out Mike's rumor seems more true than false. Clark is seeking a second and third opinion about whether surgery for his wrist is needed. This means the first opinion, likely from the Colts own doctors, is surgery. Surgery likely ends Clark's season.
  • Joseph Addai cannot lift his arm above his shoulder. That's bad. Don't expect him back anytime soon. Shoulder injuries from running backs are like foot injuries for kickers. And speaking of foot injuries...
  • Austin Collie has a two to six week foot injury. This is the same foot that has bothered him since the Denver Broncos game.

Four key players, all likely gone for Week Eight against the Texans, which is a game that will probably decide the winner of the AFC South. Losing McAfee, Addai, and Collie is something the Colts can recover from. There's a reason Donald Brown and Anthony Gonzalez are still on this team. They should be able to step up and contribute. Both are first round picks. And while I like McAfee, he is (at the end of the day) a punter. Punting is pretty basic. The Colts should be able to find someone who can do the job for one week.

However, losing Clark 'indefinitely' effectively ends the season. The Colts, in my opinion, have absolutely no chance of getting to and winning a Super Bowl without Clark. He creates so many match-up problems and is so key for the running game that the Colts offense will need to change dramatically if they are to have any hope of making the playoffs. Once in, a good team will most certainly exploit the absence of Clark, and defeat them.

I hope I'm wrong here. I really, really do. But, I'm not here to 'cheerlead' and I'm not here to give you my opinion in a heart-shaped box with flowers. We're about cold, honest truth here. Step back for a second and remove your Colts fan jersey. When you do, ask yourself, 'Can this team win a Super Bowl without Dallas Clark?' If you answer 'yes,' then follow-up with this: 'Then why are the Colts paying him $36 million dollars?'

Some players cannot be replaced folks. Dallas Clark is one of those players. We can make the playoffs without him, but making the playoffs isn't the goal. Wining a Super Bowl is the goal.