Plenty of former NFL players have made the transition to becoming a head coach in the league. Not many of them have done it without any college or NFL coaching experience before getting the job.
That’s what made the Jeff Saturday hiring as the Colts’ interim head coach all the more surprising. Saturday’s only experience coaching a high school football team to accompany his experience as a former NFL player and an analyst for ESPN.
The current interim coach enjoyed a productive NFL playing career before becoming an analyst, high school coach and now interim coach for the Colts. He was a six-time Pro Bowl recipient and four-time All-Pro team member after a four-year career at UNC, where he was a two-time first-team All-ACC team member.
Saturday had a standout NFL career during his 14 years in the NFL. Here’s what you need you to know about his time playing in the NFL.
What position did Jeff Saturday play?
Saturday might not have a lot of coaching experience, but he had plenty of leadership experience.
Throughout his 14-year NFL career, Saturday played center. A six-time Pro Bowl center, Saturday appeared in 211 of a possible 224 regular-season games along with 20 career postseason games.
Saturday is coaching a potential future Hall of Fame quarterback now in Matt Ryan, but this isn’t his first time working with players headed to Canton.
Who did Jeff Saturday play for?
Saturday spent all but one year of his 14-year career with the Colts.
The former UNC linemen was initially signed by the Ravens as an undrafted free agent after the 1998 NFL draft, but was waived before the season began. Saturday was later signed by the Colts in January 1999, a year after Peyton Manning was drafted by the Colts. Saturday got his start backing up Steve McKinney before starting his first game on Nov. 21, 1999.
In 2000, he officially transitioned to center as the team’s full-time starter, and he continued to snap the ball to Manning for 170 more games until Manning left to go to the Broncos in 2010. Saturday had one last season with the Colts in 2011.
During his time with the Colts, he earned five Pro Bowl nods (2005-07, 2009-10), two first-team All-Pro selections (2005, 2007) and two second-team All-Pro selections (2006, 2009). He also picked up a ring with the Colts in Super Bowl 41 in Indianapolis’ victory over the Bears.
Saturday had one final season in his NFL career, and he spent it with Aaron Rodgers and the Packers in 2012. Saturday earned a Pro Bowl nod in the year and had one last playoff run before being eliminated in the NFC divisional round by the 49ers.
Following the Pro Bowl, Saturday signed a one-day contract with Indianapolis to officially retire as a member of the Colts.