Of all the coaching firings in recent days, this one stings the most: The Colts have reportedly terminated the contract of legendary defensive line coach John Teerlinck. Teerlinck's son, Bill, was also fired. Bill worked as the assistant d-line coach.
Teerlinck is as much a part of the success of the 'Old Era' Colts as Tony Dungy, Peyton Manning, Bill Polian, and Dwight Freeney. In fact, without Teerlinck's coaching, Freeney might not have become All-Pro. Robert Mathis probably doesn't developed from 6th round nobody to perennial Pro Bowler without Teerlinck. Players like Corey Simon, Booger McFarland, Ed Johnson, and Raheem Brock also flourished under Teerlinck's guidance.
If you ever watched behind-the-scenes clips of the team on the sideline, Teerlinck's presence was dominating. Probably the best moment I remember regarding Teerlinck was the 2006 Divisional Playoffs against the Ravens. The Colts had their entire defensive plan ready, but at some point in the game Indy's pass rushers were absolutely killing the Ravens o-line. Teerlinck took the defensive plans from each of the players and told them to tear them up.
'Tear it up! Tear it up! Now, we do we WE do.'
As some of you may recall, John Randle had Teerlinck as his presenter at Randle's 2010 Hall of Fame induction. Randle credited his success in the NFL to Teerlinck's coaching in Minnesota, when Teerlinck first worked for then-defensive coordinator Tony Dungy. Dungy would later hire Teerlinck in Indianapolis.
Sad to see a titan of an assistant coach like Teerlinck go. Wish him and his family well.