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Colts News And Notes

Some R&R seems to be in order for some members of the Indianapolis Colts as they have locked up home field adfvantage through the AFC playoffs. More on this and more from Phil Richards of the Indianapolis Star:

* It was a much-appreciated late-season departure from the norm for Indianapolis Colts cornerback Kelvin Hayden. He didn’t spend his weekend in zone coverage.

“Spent it on the couch,” Hayden said.

The upside of having so little rest and preparation time for a Thursday game at Jacksonville last week was having three days to recuperate before the New York Jets visit Lucas Oil Stadium on Sunday. The weekend felt like a mini-bye week.

“It helps out a lot. You’re always banged up this time of year,” linebacker Gary Brackett said Monday.

Linebacker Clint Session said it’s a bigger boon mentally than physically. Left tackle Charlie Johnson agreed.

“You just get away, mentally get away from football, get away from the grind,” Johnson said. “You come back on Monday and you feel refreshed; you feel ready to finish the last two weeks and however long you play.”

Colts coach Jim Caldwell said that for some players, playing Sunday and again Thursday might have compounded injury issues. So the coaches and medical staff will evaluate those cases individually this week, but Caldwell echoed his players.

“Did we need those three days? You’d better believe it,” he said. “I think they’ll help us in the long run.”

* The Colts went 6-0 in what might be the best division in the NFL, top to bottom.

The AFC South is 23-9 in interdivisional games and 11-4 against the NFC. The league’s next best interdivisional record is 21-15, compiled by the NFC East, which has gone 7-7 against the AFC.

“I think the whole division might wind up above .500,” Brackett said. “That’s pretty competitive football.”

The Colts are 14-0, Jacksonville, Tennessee and Houston all 7-7. Philadelphia leads the NFC East at 10-4, followed by Dallas at 9-5. The New York Giants were 7-6 going into a Monday night game at Washington (4-9).

* WR Anthony Gonzalez and RB Donald Brown practiced Monday, when Colts president Bill Polian said on his radio show that the club hopes Gonzalez can be ready to play against the Jets. Polian added that K Adam Vinatieri will do some kicking later this week to see if he might be ready to go. Gonzalez has been out with a right knee injury since the season opener. Vinatieri has missed the past nine games while recovering from a knee injury and Brown has been out three games with a chest injury. CB Jerraud Powers (hamstring) missed Sunday’s game and will be out this week and probably next week. . . . Peyton Manning threw four touchdown passes during the Colts’ 35-31 victory at Jacksonville to run his season total to 33 and become the only QB in NFL history other than Brett Favre with five seasons of 30 or more. Favre has done it eight times and has 27 this season. . . . Caldwell said Friday that he wouldn’t be surprised if the NFL weighed in on Chad Simpson’s post-touchdown run up the tunnel behind the end zone at Jacksonville Municipal Stadium. Simpson kept going to celebrate his 93-yard kickoff return. So far, so good, he said Monday. Colts cornerback Jacob Lacey was fined $10,000 for celebrating a 35-yard interception return touchdown by sliding into the end zone at St. Louis on Oct. 25. Lacey appealed the fine and it was rescinded.

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