The Indianapolis Colts won't attempt to re-sign Jeff Saturday, their starting center the past nine seasons, before the start of the league's free agent signing period, according to his agent.
In an e-mail to The Indianapolis Star late Saturday, Ralph Cindrich said "discussions and events this past week'' confirmed the team will allow Saturday to "test the free agent market,'' which opens Friday.
Saturday, 33 and a three-time Pro Bowl selection, is one of eight Colts who will become unrestricted free agents at the end of the week.
Depending upon interest shown by other teams, "there is a possibility he could return to the Colts,'' Cindrich added.
Saturday has been the cornerstone of the Colts' offensive line and quarterback Peyton Manning's center since 2000.
With Saturday starting 138 regular-season games the past nine seasons -- he missed six games with injuries, including four last season -- Manning has worked behind one of the league's most efficient offensive lines. The unit allowed a league-low 178 sacks during that stretch, tying a club record by yielding only 14 last season.
The decision not to attempt to re-sign Saturday isn't a surprise, especially on the heels of the Colts locking up cornerback Kelvin Hayden with a five-year, $43 million contract last week.