Print and Go Back ESPN.com: NFL [Print without images]

Thursday, October 27, 2011
Bill Polian defends Jim Caldwell

ESPN.com news services

Colts team president Bill Polian said Wednesday on SiriusXM NFL Radio that coach Jim Caldwell isn't responsible for Indianapolis' struggles, and that injuries to key players like Peyton Manning, safety Melvin Bullitt and linebacker Gary Brackett are to blame.

"How you evaluate (Caldwell) is what you do with what he has," Polian said. "You can't hold him responsible for injuries. You can't hold him responsible for an unforeseen surgery (to Manning) that no one anticipated would happen. The things that he can control, I think he's done a terrific job of, given where we are from a standpoint of personnel."

The Colts (0-7) are coming off a 62-7 loss to the New Orleans Saints. Indyh is last in the NFL in total defense and have allowed the most points in the 32-team league. Polian said he doesn't see an effort issue on defense, but wouldn't say what, or who, was the problem.

"The players are playing hard, and it's hard for me to believe that Robert Mathis and Dwight Freeney and Pat Angerer and Kavell Conner, and people who, on and on -- Fili Moala -- people who have played well in the past have all of a sudden fallen off the cliff," Polian said. "That's not been the case. That isn't the case. So we've got to figure out what's wrong and get it corrected."

The Colts are one of three winless teams, along with Miami and St. Louis, who both are 0-6.

Caldwell said he's not worried about where he stands with management.

"There are no guarantees in this league, you know that," Caldwell said. "I have been around long enough to understand that every year is different, every year takes a lot of work and it's highly difficult. In terms of me personally, I don't get into all of that stuff. My personal feelings and all of those things don't matter. I'm more concerned about the guys that I coach, getting them to head in the right direction and trying to get this thing turned around. That's my impetus right now, that's my focus."

There's one cure.

"Winning at this point in time is extremely important," Caldwell said. "Any time of the season. Number one, we're measured by it. Number two, it's extremely important because when you've been struggling like our guys have, a win can work miracles. We need one."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.