DATE: Sunday, September 27, 2009
SITE: University of Phoenix Stadium
KICKOFF: 8:20 p.m. (EDT)/5:20 p.m. (MST)
Making a second consecutive road nationally-televised appearance early in the 2009 regular season, the Indianapolis Colts, 2-0, visit the Arizona Cardinals, 1-1, on Sunday, September 27. Kickoff in the University of Phoenix Stadium for the contest, telecast nationally by NBC Sports, is 8:20 p.m. (EDT)/5:20 p.m. (MST). Westwood One provides national radio coverage of the contest.
The Colts will be making their second-ever trip to Arizona to meet the Cardinals. Indianapolis dropped its only series meeting in Arizona in 1990. The teams have met three subsequent times in Indianapolis, with the Colts taking victories during the 1992, 1996 and 2005 regular seasons. The inactivity in visiting the Cardinals is the longest stretch for the Colts against any league opponent, and it is the second-longest current league streak (Pittsburgh at Washington, 1988). This week's game follows last week's Monday Night appearance by Indianapolis in Miami, where the Colts erased four deficits in earning a 27-23 comeback victory over the Dolphins. The Colts enter Sunday night's battle with an eleven-game regular-season game winning streak. The victory at Miami extended the sixth 10 -game regular-season winning streak in franchise history (13, 2005; 11, 1964; 11, 1975-76; 11, 1999; 11, 2008-09; 10, 2005-06), the fourth since 1999. This is the first of four NFC West opponents for Indianapolis in 2009. The Colts host Seattle on October 4, before visiting St. Louis (October 25) and hosting San Francisco (November 1). This also is the first of three appearances by Indianapolis on NBC. The Colts visit Tennessee on October 11, and host New England on November 15. Arizona reaches this week's battle after a 31-17 victory last Sunday at Jacksonville.
The Colts are owners of the NFL's best regular-season record (116-46) since the start of the 1999 season, while being the only team to earn nine playoff appearances in the last 10 seasons, including a league-best seven consecutive post-season berths. Indianapolis has won 61 of its last 75 regular-season games. Indianapolis' winning ways include a 33-10 record in AFC South play, while the club has owned or shared the lead in 97 of 121 weeks of the division's existence. The Colts won five AFC South championships from 2003-07, the best divisional-title streak in club history. Indianapolis is the only NFL team to have double-digit victory totals and playoff appearances each season since the 2002 NFL Realignment. In 2008, Indianapolis produced its seventh consecutive 10 -victory season, tying the second-longest streak in NFL history (16, San Francisco, 1983-98; 7, Dallas, 1975-81). Indianapolis extended it NFL record with a sixth consecutive season with 12 -victory season and became the only franchise to win seven or more consecutive regular-season games in five consecutive seasons (8, 2004; 13, 2005; 9, 2006; 7 and 6, 2007; 9, 2008).
PERSONNEL REPORT: DB-Bob Sanders (knee), TE-Tom Santi (ankle), OG-Jamey Richard (shoulder), WR-Anthony Gonzalez (knee) were out; DB-Jamie Silva (abdomen), OT-Charlie Johnson (back), DB-Jerraud Powers (groin), TE-Gijon Robinson (back) were questionable for the last game. Last game's inactive players were: Sanders, Santi, Gonzalez, Richard, Silva, Powers, DT-Fili Moala and QB-Curtis Painter.
TELEVISION/RADIO: NBC Sports telecasts with Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth and Andrea Kremer (field reporter). 1070-The Fan/HANK-FM, 97.1 broadcasts with Bob Lamey, Will Wolford and Kevin Lee (field reporter). Westwood One provides national radio coverage with Howard David and James Lofton.
NEXT WEEK: Indianapolis hosts Seattle on Sunday, October 4 at 1:00 p.m. (EDT).
WWW.COLTS.COM: Please check the official website of the Indianapolis Colts for the latest in team information and merchandise.
JIM CALDWELL was named head coach of the Colts on January 13, 2009, and this marks his eighth season with Indianapolis. Caldwell joined the club in 2002 as quarterbacks coach before adding the title of assistant head coach prior to the 2005 season. Caldwell was promoted to associate head coach with the club prior to the 2008 season. The club's offense has produced levels prolific enough during Caldwell's tenure to allow the club to earn an NFL-best seven consecutive playoff appearances. The club has earned 10 victories in seven consecutive seasons, tying the second-longest NFL streak, and the club's six consecutive 12 -victory seasons set the NFL's all-time standard. From 2004-08, Indianapolis became the only NFL team to earn winning streaks of at least seven games in five consecutive seasons. Caldwell joined the Colts after serving as quarterbacks coach with Tampa Bay in 2001. Caldwell has more than 20 years of collegiate coaching experience. He spent 1993-2000 as head coach at Wake Forest. He served as an assistant coach at Southern Illinois (1978-80), Northwestern (1981), Colorado (1982-84), Louisville (1985) and Penn State (1986-92). Caldwell has coached in six bowl games and won a national championship with Penn State in 1986. In addition to serving on Joe Paterno's title staff, Caldwell tutored under three other coaches who won collegiate crowns (Rey Dempsey, Southern Illinois; Bill McCartney, Colorado; Howard Schnellenberger, Louisville). Caldwell was a four-year starter at defensive back at Iowa and worked as a graduate assistant for Iowa in 1977. He holds a bachelor's degree from Iowa. Caldwell was born on January 16, 1955 in Beloit, Wis.
KEN WHISENHUNT was hired as head coach of Arizona on January 14, 2007. Whisenhunt has directed the Cardinals to 8-8 and 9-7 regular-season records and to the NFC Championship and a berth in Super Bowl XLIII after last season. Whisenhunt joined Arizona after serving six seasons with Pittsburgh, the first three as TE Coach and the final three as offensive coordinator. He served 1997-98 with Baltimore, 1999 with Cleveland and 2000 with the New York Jets before joining the Steelers. Whisenhunt also served 1995-96 at Vanderbilt. Whisenhunt was a D12-85 choice of Atlanta who played nine seasons (1985-88 Falcons; 1989-90 Washington; 1991-93 New York Jets). Whisenhunt played TE/H-B at Georgia Tech. He is a native of Atlanta, Ga.
COLTS-CARDINALS SERIES NOTES
The Colts and Cardinals have met 13 times, with Indianapolis leading the series, 7-6. The Colts will be visiting the Cardinals for the first time since December 2, 1990, when Arizona took a 20-17 decision. The last series renewal came in Indianapolis on January 1, 2006. On that day, Indianapolis set a franchise record with a 14th seasonal win by topping Arizona, 17-13. A goal-line stand in the final seconds gave Indianapolis its victory as the club never trailed. QB-Jim Sorgi was 20-30-207, 2 TDs/1 int. after taking over for starting QB-Peyton Manning after the first possession. The club deactivated eight starters due to injury and deployed reserves through most of the game. Indianapolis produced three sacks to tie the franchise record with 46 for the season. The Colts surpassed the prior seasonal mark of 13 wins in 1968 and 1999. The teams met in the RCA Dome on September 1, 1996, with the Colts winning, 20-13. The Colts have won three of four games in Indianapolis against Arizona, taking a 16-13 win on December 20, 1992, while dropping a 34-33 decision on September 16, 1984.
BEST NFL RECORDS DURING 1999-2009 REGULAR SEASONS
COLTS ARE NFL'S WINNINGEST TEAM FROM 1999-2009: The Colts stand as the NFL's winningest team since the start of the 1999 season. The Colts own a 116-46 record during that span.