Colts Extended Contracts for Both Pagano and Grigson
In a stunning and bizarre turn of events, the Indianapolis Colts did the exact opposite of what everyone thought, or at least hoped they would do, signing both Head Coach Chuck Pagano and General Manager Ryan Grigson to contract extensions instead of showing them the door.
Despite an 8-8 season, and what has been reported as a "toxic" relationship behind closed doors that allegedly involved undermining Pagano's authority, owner Jim Irsay felt consistency and staying the course outweighed throwing a stick of dynamite in the room, blowing the whole thing up, and rebuilding — again (like he did after the 2011 season).
With the extensions, both men are now locked into the organization through 2019. Signings that didn't sit well with some.
As a fan, I've been fairly outspoken when it came to the Colts this season, saying on a few occasions I thought both Pagano and Grigson should go, more so Grigson considering the signings and draft picks he's made. But when I heard last night the team had decided to keep Chuck Pagano on board, I didn't hate the thought. His cliché-filled press conferences with all the talk of "building a monster", "grit", and make sure the team keeps "grinding" became tiresome a long time ago, but I feel like he was doing the best he could with what was given to him by Grigson. Even the best poker players on the planet can do so much with a hand full of jokers.
The Grigson extension is what has me scratching my head. To be fair, not every move he made was terrible. He picked Andrew Luck, traded for Vontae Davis, drafted Jack Mewhort, and signed both Kendall Langford and Mike Adams. With that said, it feels like the misses (Trent Richardson, Todd Herremans, et al.) far outweigh the hits. And if the reports of a strained relationship are true, then I just can't understand why you'd keep the perceived root of the problem around. The scenario lends itself to the whole "definition of insanity", "fitting a square peg in a round hole" mentality.
By the sound of comments made during the press conference last night, Irsay gave the impression he put the two men in a room and let them hash out their differences after speaking with each individually. Maybe that's what they needed, a moment to sit down, look each other in the face, and scream about how each is preventing the other from achieving his goals.
We Colts fans are a spoiled bunch. We followed a 14-year run with one of the greatest quarterback's to ever play the game, where we witnessed double-digit win seasons on a regular basis and a Super Bowl victory, with potentially another 14 to 15 year run with another QB that may become one of the best to ever play the game. I think we can live with an 8-8 season and missing the playoffs once or twice. At least we're not Cleveland Browns fans.
If this team makes it back to the playoffs next year, this will all be forgotten, and some of us may even begrudgingly give Irsay credit for keeping the band together. But I understand why that feels like a big "IF" for some right now.