Colts' Saturday: 'Wish I had that 3rd down back' after not calling timeout
Indianapolis Colts interim head coach Jeff Saturday said Tuesday he regrets his decision not to call a timeout in the final minute of Monday's 24-17 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
"I wish I had that third down back. I wish I had called a timeout," said Saturday, who was coaching only his third NFL game, according to Zak Keefer of The Athletic.
With his team trailing by seven points with 59 seconds left in the fourth quarter, Colts quarterback Matt Ryan ran for 14 yards to the Steelers' 26-yard line, setting up a third-and-3. Indianapolis didn't use one of its three timeouts after the play, letting the clock tick down to 30 seconds before the next snap. Jonathan Taylor then carried the ball for no gain before Saturday finally called a timeout.
"It's a learning experience," Saturday said. "I hold the guys accountable. I need to hold myself accountable for that ... frustrated at myself for that. That one's on me."
The Colts hired Saturday, their former longtime center, as interim head coach on Nov. 7 in a stunning move to replace Frank Reich. A consultant for the Colts over the last few years, Saturday had never coached above the high school level. The 47-year-old is a member of the team's Ring of Honor after playing for Indianapolis from 1999 to 2011.
Saturday originally said postgame he thought he did the right thing during the final drive against the Steelers, adding that he "thought we had plenty of time."
The Colts are 1-2 under Saturday.
"Listen, all my coaches, whether it was Tony (Dungy), Jim Caldwell, those guys were always very transparent with the team, whether it was public or not," Saturday said, according to Keefer. "I believe in that. Inside, I wanna make sure everybody feels that you own whatever portion is yours."
The 4-7-1 Colts visit the Dallas Cowboys in Week 13.