One of the downfalls to having an unexpectedly successful season is other teams take some of the really good employees with your organization. The Chargers have taken one of the best from the Colts, naming Colts Vice President of Football Operations Tom Telesco their new General Manager, a really good hire for the Chargers.
Telesco has been with the Colts since 1998, starting as an Area Scout, and slowly moved his way up the ladder. During the hey-day of the Bill Polian era, Telesco was the clear #2 guy in terms of scouting and evaluating talent, involved in all the decision-making with Polian. Learning your craft under one of the best personnel men in NFL history is a pretty impressive thing to have on your resume.
Want something else impressive about the 40 year old? From the San Diego Union-Times:
"He came in and went through our roster, every player on the team," said Dean Spanos, Chargers president. "He did a player evaluation. He knew everyone, and he did it without notes. That to me said a lot. He had a really good feel for our team."
After last season, the Colts pretty much overhauled the entire organization, Telesco was one of the very few that Irsay kept around, which means a couple things to me. One, that he was a loyal guy and Irsay felt there would be no problems working with a group of completely new people and wouldn't cause issues, and that he would be responsible for helping first-year GM Ryan Grigson with what would turn out to be a magnificent first season in Indianapolis. Grigson had some glowing words for Telesco today:
"He was instrumental in our success this year, and I couldn’t have asked for a better right hand man. He helped lay our foundation of a new era and was a living example in every area of his duties of the mantra Coach Pagano preached from day one in terms of ‘Trust, Loyalty and Respect.’ I don’t know a finer football man/person than Tom Telesco. He is very deserving of this privilege, and the San Diego Chargers are in great hands. On behalf of the entire Colts organization we wish Tom, Larah and his children nothing but the best as they begin this new journey together."
His former college teammate at John Carroll University David Caldwell, who also had an extended run with the Colts, was just named GM of the Jaguars. Another of their teammates? Chris Polian. We hear all the time about how who you know is equally important as what you know, and it's certainly true for getting that foot in the door. After that, these guys have done a great job, and their hard work is paying off for them.
Now, the Chargers are still looking for a Head Coach, and Telesco will obviously be responsible for replacing Norv Turner. The obvious choice would be Colts Offensive Coordinator Bruce Arians, but if I were betting either Arians or the field, I'd probably go with the field, despite the obvious working relationship they already have.
While the Colts lost a great front office guy today, it's great for Telesco to get this opportunity. I think he'll do really well, although not well enough that he beats the Colts consistently...