The Indianapolis Colts were a laughing-stock before Peyton Manning and Bill Polian. With Manning and Polian, they rose to the top of the NFL. But the organization cleaned out the front office, cut Manning, and they haven’t been the same since. They need to bring Manning back in some capacity to right their wrong and restore some credibility to the organization.
The Indianapolis Colts had reasons to release Peyton Manning, and clean out their front office. They had prolonged success, so the thought was they could plug-in Andrew Luck and continue their run. Colts owner Jim Irsay did what he felt he had to do. But since Manning’s departure, the organization has lost credibility around the NFL.
Credibility may seem insignificant, but it is the lifeblood of a franchise. It attracts the best players. Credibility gets players to take less money, and attracts the brightest minds in the industry.
The Colt’s current status a joke isn’t surprising considering the string of bad decisions that the organization made in Manning’s absence. Ryan Grigson was a disaster as general manager. None of his decisions paid off. He failed in every way possible: the draft, free-agency, and via trade. He will forever be remembered for trading for Trent Richardson.
But his greatest transgression that still hurts the perception of the organization is #DeflateGate. He brought it to the leagues attention before the game and at half-time. It seems as if he was setting up excuses for why the Indianapolis Colts were going to lose. His act painted the organization in a negative light that current General Manager, Chris Ballard, must navigate.
It wouldn’t have been bad if Grigson was the only one, but Irsay was guilty as well. Irsay was pulled over with cash and pills. The situation was bad enough that he had to go to drug rehab. A leader in or out of drug rehab doesn’t instill confidence in any organization.
The Indianapolis Colts are trying to move on with Ballard, but he has problems beyond football. There still hasn’t been an explanation on the Andrew Luck injury, but everything that we heard makes the medical staff seem incompetent.
They waited on the surgery instead of doing it at the beginning of the offseason. That makes no sense unless they didn’t realize the extent of the damage. In which case that raises the question of whether he should have been playing with this injury because it is supposedly an old injury.
Unfortunately the Colts have never clarified the situation, and there is just speculation out there. But the speculation puts them in a bad light, so one would think they would clarify the fact. By not addressing the situation, the Colts let the story take a life of its own.
It’s fair to question whether the Colts know what they are doing. With that in mind, it shouldn’t be surprising that no one wants to join the organization. The coaching search was a bad indicator. There are only so many jobs to be had, but the Colts struggled to get someone to take the job.
The fact that Josh McDaniels was a candidate shows how desperate the organization was. The Colts made a trade with the New England Patriots, but hard feelings don’t die that easy. Deflategate cost the Patriots $1 million and two draft picks. The Patriots were waiting on the moment and the Colts gave it them. But there wasn’t much choice after Matt Nagy turned the job down.
Nagy reportedly turned down the Indianapolis Colts for the Chicago Bears. He was familiar with Ballard from their time and Kansas City, but he still spurned the Colts. That is very telling. Add in the fact that the Colts have struck out on free-agency for the most part, and it’s easy to deduce that the organization doesn’t have the best reputation around the league.
There is talk of being fiscally responsible and not wanting to spend too much, but that is exaggerated. There is competition for elite free agents and Colts don’t measure up. Credibility is a factor with free agents and the COlts don’t currently have it Peyton Manning would help with that.
The Mannings are the first family of football. That name brings respect. With Peyton Manning in the fold the organization would be able to get the best of the best in front office personnel as well as players. He is also a big personality that would be able to keep Jim Irsay in check.
It won’t be easy to get Peyton as he is in demand. He has turned down both ESPN and Fox for broadcasting jobs. But Irsay should do whatever it takes to bring him home. Part ownership should be on the table because Manning is the reason it is valued where it is. Plus Peyton will bring in corporate dollars.
In order to get back to where the franchise was, it’s going to require a big name. Indianapolis isn’t big city so it needs a big name. Peyton has that kind of star power. He doesn’t have the experience, but sometimes the name is more important than the game. Peyton Manning’s name holds weight, and the Colts need that right now. Otherwise fans need to be prepared for years of futility.