The Indianapolis Colts have been making some moves in their front office this pasts week, as new GM Chris Ballard has begun overhauling the scouting and personnel departments.
This isn’t abnormal for a new GM to do, and Ballard has reportedly let some notable people go, such as VP of football operations Jimmy Raye III and director of college scouting T.J. McCreight.
It was presumed that the scouting changes would be quite extensive, but perhaps that’s not the case. According to the Indianapolis Star’s Stephen Holder, the changes might just be limited to a few people.
Updating #Colts staff changes: Far as I know changes limited to Jimmy Raye, TJ McCreight (coll dir) and scouts Brandon Brown, Ahmad Russell— Stephen Holder (@HolderStephen) May 5, 2017
A majority of the team's area/regional scouts still in place and presumably will be retained. I think. Additions expected in coming weeks.— Stephen Holder (@HolderStephen) May 5, 2017
We had already heard about the Colts parting ways with Jimmy Raye and T.J. McCreight. Raye had spent the past four seasons with the Colts as the VP of football operations and is very well respected throughout the league. Raye has interviewed for a number of GM jobs in the past and was a candidate for the Colts’ opening this year, and Jim Irsay has spoken favorably of him - but with Chris Ballard coming in, it was unclear whether Raye would continue to work with the Colts. McCreight was brought in as the director of college scouting in 2012 under Ryan Grigson, a role that he served in for the last five years.
The other two names are ones we hadn’t heard of before regarding these scouting changes, but neither should really be surprises. Brandon Brown was hired by Grigson in 2015 as a scouting assistant and then was an advance scout in 2016. Ahmad Russell worked with Grigson for seven years in Philadelphia before joining Grigson in Indianapolis in 2012 as an area scout with a focus on the mid-atlantic region.
At this point it’s unclear whether these four guys are the only ones who are out, but Holder’s report does make it sound like the scouting changes might not be as extensive as we previously thought. There will, however, be new additions and there will be new scouts who are hired, so perhaps we could see others who remain getting new responsibilities and job titles.
The past few months have given Chris Ballard plenty of time to not only evaluate the Colts’ roster but also the Colts’ scouting and personnel staff, and perhaps the work of some has convinced Ballard to keep them around. Either way, we know of four changes to the personnel department already, so there will be new additions regardless of whether that’s the extent of the firings or not.