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Howard Mudd files retirement papers, but might not be gone

So, yeah. It's pretty crappy that the owners decided to kill the pensions of two of their longest tenured coaches in the NFL: Tom Moore and Howard Mudd. Combined, the guys have given 67 years to the NFL, and both deserve better treatment than this. I can't understand the motivation for it. The NFL is absolutely fine financially, and seems to be one of the few business ventures that is growing in this horrid economy. So, to cut the pensions of two great, legendary coaches and, essentially, force them out of the league is the kind of thing that could haunt this NFL further down the road.

I mean, why work for the NFL, who will cut your pension for n reason whatsoever, when you can coach in college (where you could make more money and don't have to worry about moron owners cutting your pension without any notice)?

The bright spot in all this is Howard and Tom could stay on doing the exact same job, but as "consulants." But even with that, there are complications:

Mudd would like to remain as a "consultant" with the Colts but that is also one of the loopholes that owners wanted to close, sources said, citing the example of another renown line coach, Alex Gibbs, who met the league formula for cashing out fully on his pension, only to be hired back as a $800,000 to $1 million consultant.

Right now, there isn't a whole lot of trust between coaches and the owners. I can't say I blame the coaches. The owners got greedy, it seems, and basically yanked the rug out from under guys like Howard Mudd and Tom Moore. If this move forces them from the NFL, it is the kind of move that could cost the NFL some fans.

Mudd's likely replacement is assistant o-line coach Pete Metzelaars. Metzelaars (a former player in Buffalo and other places) is a fine coach who filled in for Mudd last year when Mudd was out for health reasons. The Colts and Howard have been grooming Metzelaars for years as Howard's eventual replacement. If Tom Moore is ousted, Assistant Head Coach and WR Coach Clyde Christensen would take over as the Offensive Coordinator. Clyde is one of the best WR coaches in football, and has been with the Colts offensive staff since 2002.

So, if the old warriors need to go, there is still some great coaching continuity. Obviously, we Colts fans have no ill will or feeling towards Howard or Tom if they walk away. Far too many of us have seen our pensions dry up because of greed from rich fatcats, and if the rich fatcats want to take Howard's and Tom's pensions, then the best thing they can do is take the money and retire. Absolutely no hard feelings.

However, I'm hopeful Jim Irsay and Bill Polian will work something out so that Howard and Tom can stay on as long as they like. We shall see.