Here we go again.

Despite the “resting the starters” strategy not working well for the Colts prior to the 2005 and 2007 playoffs, the hottest team in the NFL is taking an early vacation.

Tony Dungy will rest the Colts' starters on Sunday. If at first you don't succeed ...

Tony Dungy will rest the Colts' starters on Sunday. If at first you don't succeed ...

With their playoff position locked up, the Colts have nothing at stake when they host the Titans on Sunday.
As a result, Tony Dungy will rest the injured and play his starters sparingly, as he’s always done in the past when facing this situation.

In other words, expect Jim Sorgi and the benchwarmers to get trampled by the Titans and for the Colts’ impressive eight-game win streak to end as they enter the postseason.
The momentum they’ve gained over the past two months will come to a screeching halt.

The last two times the Colts took the last week of the regular season off, they were one and done in the playoffs.

In 2005, they hosted the Steelers and laid an egg, spotting Pittsburgh 14 points en route to a heartbreaking loss. Last year, a banged-up Chargers’ team came in and shocked the Colts, with backup quarterback Billy Volek leading the go-ahead drive.

It’s a difficult predicament for a head coach.

Should the Colts get ousted in the first round of the playoffs, critics will undoubtedly blame Dungy for resting his starters and not learning from past experience. Then again, if he changes his ways and Peyton Manning or Dwight Freeney suffer a serious injury late in a meaningless game, imagine the backlash.

So while the Chargers and Broncos lay it all on the field Sunday, fighting tooth and nail for the right to host the Colts in the opening-round of the postseason, Indianapolis will essentially use Week 17 as a bye week – an unfitting end to a regular season that never had a dull moment for the Colts.

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