According to Chicago sportscaster David Kaplan, the Indianapolis Colts were ready to make a move on Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Matt Nagy as their head coach, but he was convinced that the Chicago Bears had a better situation.
Source tells me the Indianapolis Colts were all in on hiring Matt Nagy. Uncertainty on health of Andrew Luck vs Mitchell Trubisky + Nagy’s belief the Bears roster is much better made decision for him. “Pace landed him by convincing him sunny days are ahead for the Bears.”— David Kaplan (@thekapman) January 9, 2018
I took a few things away from this.
First, quarterback Andrew Luck’s health is going to be a determining factor for any head coaching candidate that the Colts bring in. It just is. Will you have a nearly elite-level franchise quarterback, or won’t you? Despite general manager Chris Ballard saying that he wants a coach to come to Indianapolis for the Colts franchise and not just Luck, and that any coach who doesn’t thinks that way won’t be a good fit, it is likely to turn a candidate or two away.
On the other hand, Ballard is very smart and is likely not going to waste his time interviewing people that he doesn’t explicitly trust. His group of candidates is likely outstanding and fits the mold of what he wants. Ballard is already very familiar with Nagy from their time together in Kansas City from 2013-’16.
And as far as comparing the rosters of the Bears and Colts, the Bears’ roster may be a little better right now, but not by much. The Colts’ roster isn’t as far away as many people think. Their 4-12 record this year could have easily been a wild card playoff team with a healthy, above-average quarterback in 2017.
The Colts also have several building blocks on their roster: Marlon Mack, T.Y. Hilton, Jack Doyle, Anthony Castonzo, Ryan Kelly, Henry Anderson, Johnathan Hankins, Jabaal Sheard, John Simon, Quincy Wilson, Kenny Moore, Nate Hairston, Malik Hooker and Clayton Geathers are all players that have either played well, are already pretty good, or we think are going to be pretty good. That’s not even everybody, either. The plan is that Luck returns in 2018, plus we don’t know what other young players currently on the Colts will continue developing.