Earlier today, it was reported that Jon Gruden had turned down the Colts’ head coaching position, but it sounds like things aren’t completely settled in Indianapolis quite yet regarding potential changes.
That’s because this afternoon, it was reported that Jim Irsay is still trying to get Peyton Manning involved in the franchise once again.
Colts owner Jim Irsay in fact made strong push for Peyton Manning as head of football w Gruden as coach. Still hopeful to get Peyton— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) January 14, 2017
WTHR can confirm that the Colts have spoken to Peyton Manning about a front office job with team. Told it's still a fluid situation.— Bob Kravitz (@bkravitz) January 14, 2017
Told by multiple sources Irsay met recently with Gruden and Manning. @AdamSchefter reported Gruden turned it down. No response from Colts.— Bob Kravitz (@bkravitz) January 14, 2017
At the same time, however, both Jay Glazer and Bob Kravitz seem to think that a deal with Manning isn’t likely.
Been told by multiple sources that a Manning hire is "unlikely'' at this point. Not sure if sticking point is ownership share or timing.— Bob Kravitz (@bkravitz) January 14, 2017
While Irsay would love to bring Peyton back its Manning's call and tho he's listened I think it would be uphill battle to get him to do it— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) January 14, 2017
Basically, none of this should surprise anyone who’s really been paying attention the last few weeks. Here’s what it sounds like the situation is right now: Jim Irsay wants Peyton Manning involved as the head of the Colts’ football operations, in a similar role to that of John Elway in Denver. Manning has indeed had discussions with Irsay about the role and it’s his decision on whether to accept it, but that’s unlikely to happen - whether that’s because he doesn’t feel ready just a year after retiring or whether that’s because the two sides can’t agree on compensation like an ownership stake. But whatever the case, that is the picture that’s painted right now, and it’s the same exact picture that we’ve gotten in recent weeks as well.
It sounds like Irsay wanted Manning to head up the football operations department and Gruden to be the head coach, but Gruden declined Irsay’s offer. The Manning part still sounds possible, though that’d be unlikely. And if Manning does accept the job, what would that mean for Ryan Grigson and Chuck Pagano, since Manning would likely want to hire his own guys? It’s a complex situation, but it does confirm a lot of what we’ve been hearing recently.
The situation still sounds fluid, so things could change. But it seems like the decision is now up to Manning on whether to join the Colts in this role, and so beyond that we don’t really know what’s going to happen - but it would be a great move for the Colts if they were able to bring Peyton Manning in to run the show.