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The Indianapolis Colts Are One Loss Away From #1 Overall, But They Need To Play For Pride

By Beardandstache @BeardAndStache

The Indianapolis Colts Are One Loss Away From #1 Overall, But They Need To Play For Pride

Photo: Getty Images, Elsa 

- Troy Ballard

The Indianapolis Colts were thought just several weeks ago to be the sure-fire lock for the first overall pick, but because of a late season rally, Indy has the chance to move down the draft board by winning their last game in week 17.
The Colts, who started the season (0-13) with Peyton Manning sidelined, have been red-hot in the final weeks of the regular season, riding two consecutive wins. The wins against the Houston Texans and Tennessee Titans have placed the Colts in a position in which they are currently tied for the first overall pick with the St. Louis Rams and Minnesota Vikings, but one more loss would guarantee Indy the top selection.
In week 17, Indy travels to Jacksonville to take on the Jaguars, in a game that will ultimately decide which team will hold the number one pick in April's draft. With the way the Colts have been hitting all their marks, and the way the Jaguars have floundered this season, it would seem that Indy has a good chance of winning the game.
However, certain writers, such as our guest columnist Kris Fletcher, believe that the Colts should roll over and take a loss in Jacksonville to get the first overall pick. The logic is, whether or not Indy takes Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck, they would have the best selection in the draft to use at their digression. Whether that be drafting Luck to eventually replace Manning, or trading away the pick for more talent, Indy would win in every respect.
I feel differently.
Cal me old school, but I don't think that there is any situation where a team should throw a game. Regardless of what is at stake in the upcoming draft or playoffs. There have been plenty of situations in the past few years where teams could throw a game or two for different reasons, most recently being the Philadelphia Phillies.
At the end of last season, the Phillies played the Atlanta Braves, and all Philly had to do was let Atlanta win, and the St. Louis Cardinals would be eliminated from the playoffs. Instead, the Phillies swept Atlanta and the Braves were eliminated, and the Cardinals went on to beat Philadelphia in the NLDS. Philadelphia went out and played like they were the ones being eliminated against Atlanta, and they killed it in their last series of games.
Did it pay off? No. Not in any way, as the Cardinals gave Philly a tough series and went on to win the World Series. But Philadelphia didn't roll over, and they accepted their fate, and the Phillies would never let a division rival, (much like the Colts and the Jags'), win. Regardless of the what the outcome was.
There is not a situation that a team should ever try and lose, especially a team that is as hot as Colts are right now. Luck or no Luck. First overall or no first overall. The Colts are a proud franchise, and the idea of intentionally take a loss in week 17 is incomprehensible.
Indy will take the field in Jacksonville and give it their all, just like they have the past 15 games. Win or lose, there is not even a slim chance that Indy will intentionally throw this last game, and I am putting my credibility on the line -- the Indianapolis Colts will finish the season (3-13).
Count it.

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