After having the latest bye week of any NFL team last season (Week 11), the Colts will now have the earliest this season (Week 4). For rookies and veterans, the bye week will be used for different reasons but ultimately centering on getting healthy for the final 13 weeks of the season.





INDIANAPOLIS – The Colts aren't even a month into the 2012 regular season but are in the midst of their lone 'break' from games this week.

The Week 4 bye is the earliest of any team in the NFL (Pittsburgh also has a bye this week) and even though the week off from action comes so early in the season, many Colts think it is happening at an opportune time.

While making the necessary corrections from last week's loss to the Jaguars will be of focus this week, the main goal of the next few days will be getting guys that are banged up back up to speed.

Head coach Chuck Pagano said earlier in the week that he expects offensive guard Joe Reitz and outside linebacker Dwight Freeney to return to the practice field very soon in hopes of playing against Green Bay on Oct. 7.

This week is not only about getting guys that have missed time back on the field but also resting small injuries that players have fought through the first three weeks of the season.

"It's all about taking care of my body, staying in this treatment room throughout the week to get my body ready for next week," defensive end Cory Redding said.

Redding talked about the importance of taking a break mentally starting with the team's off day on Thursday. He did make it clear that the break away from the game comes on Thursday, after the team wraps up a final practice on Wednesday.

"(The bye) is a little early but we can't complain. It's on our schedule so we are just going to make do with what we have right now," Redding said. "Go out to practice, go over the corrections and look at everything, self-evaluate so we can have a stronger second half to the season."

The Week 4 bye is the earliest the Colts have had since the 2008 season.

For quarterback Andrew Luck, how to spend his first ever NFL bye week is something that he hasn't given too much thought.

He has inquired veteran quarterback Drew Stanton and quarterbacks coach Clyde Christensen and they have offered some advice to the first-year signal caller.

"The position I'm in, you've got to watch film still. I don't think I've earned the right to take four days completely off," Luck said.

"I'll make sure to relax a little. In talking to Clyde and Drew, you realize it is a long season and you want to make sure you are fresh throughout the whole thing."

Luck's improvement since the opening game is visible as he has thrown just one interception compared to four touchdowns the last two weeks.

His ability to use his feet to keep plays alive has kept Colts drives moving and now he is ready to see that production turned into wins following the bye week.

"Obviously we want to be sitting here 3-0," Luck said. "I think we are getting better. Every bit of game experience helps and I realize too that you can't lose focus for a quarter-and-a-half in a game. Take those as learning experiences and hopefully bounce back next week."

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