The Colts have already said goodbye to Peyton Manning and are reportedly prepared to do so with Dwight Freeney.

In the meantime, the clearly rebuilding franchise has parted ways with a handful of veterans with starting experience.

Joseph Addai, Gary Brackett, Melvin Bullitt, Dallas Clark and Curtis Painter were all released late this afternoon, according to the team. Addai, Brackett and Clark were part of the Super Bowl-winning 2006 squad.

It’s unfortunate, because while the team is looking to get younger and usher in a new era, Bullitt and Addai are only 27 and 28, respectively. Neither was highly paid, either, but they weren’t getting the job done and weren’t staying healthy.

The Colts save $18 million over the next three years by cutting Brackett, who is 31 and hasn’t made it through a full season since 2007. Plus, he might not have embraced the transition from cover 2 to 3-4.

At 32, Clark is the oldest of the batch. He had also struggled to stay healthy the last two years. And although he’d be a good guy to have around for Andrew Luck’s rookie season, it’s not surprising to see Indy move on.

And then there’s Painter, who proved this past season that he can’t be relied upon to step in and start. If that’s the case, why have him around? I’d imagine the Colts will look for a veteran who they feel can work well with Luck and get the job done in a pinch. If they’re going to spend anywhere, they’d be wise to spend on a backup quarterback in 2012.

The only pivot currently on the Indy roster? Former Arena Leaguer Trevor Vittatoe, whom they signed 24 hours ago.