Jeff Saturday to Retire as an Indianapolis Colt This Thursday
After 14 years in the NFL, the first 13 of which were spent snapping the ball to future Hall of Famer, Peyton Manning, Jeff Saturday will end his career as a member of Indianapolis Colts.
Known far and wide in league circles as one of the nicest and classiest in the league, Saturday was cut loose by the Colts during what I like to call, “the great purge of 2012″ which saw the team enter a rebuilding mode and part ways with more than their fair share of aging veterans and free agents, most notably Manning. Even the coaching staff and front office weren’t immune to the cuts as longtime General Manager, Bill Polian, and son Chris, who served as the team’s President of Football Operations were shown door to make room for a younger crop of talent and front office figures.
As someone who makes sure that I’m in front of the TV every Sunday, Monday, Thursday, or whenever a Colts game was scheduled, I always enjoyed watching Saturday play. At the height of the Colts run, watching he and Manning communicate without really having to say anything was something special. During the infamous lockout a couple of years ago, hearing that Saturday was an integral part of getting the players and owners to compromise on a deal made me proud to have him as a member of my team.
Watching Saturday play last year as a member of the Green Bay Packers was weird to see, much like it is to see Manning wearing the navy blue and orange of the Denver Broncos. It was surreal, even though I realize the nature of the business end of football and that it’s extremely rare for players to finish their career with the same team they started with, seeing Saturday in something other than blue and white was hard to grasp.
I know I’m not alone among Colts fans. That was made evident when the Packers went into Lucas Oil Stadium for a game in September and Saturday received a tremendous ovation when he took the field, even though it was for the other team.
A press conference is scheduled at the team’s facility this Thursday, March 7th at Noon EST / 11:00am CST to make things official. Team owner Jim Irsay has stated publicly that
Saturday has a front office position with the team if he wants it. What that position is, or whether Saturday accepts it is yet to be determined, but for now knowing that Saturday will be back home where he belongs is good enough for me.