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Volume 25 No. 88
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Colts Coaching Search Saga Ends With Hiring Of Eagles' Frank Reich

Sources said the Colts agreed to a five-year deal with Reich, who is fresh off a Super Bowl win with the Eagles

The Colts yesterday hired Eagles offensive coordinator Frank Reich as the new coach, bringing their "adventurous coaching search to an expected conclusion," according to a front-page piece by Stephen Holder of the INDIANAPOLIS STAR. After Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels last week decided not to become the Colts coach, even a "cursory look at the candidates the Colts have considered in recent days shows the Colts did not simply pick up where they left off." It is this "change of course that brought the Colts to Reich." There was a "clear contrast between the second round of candidates and those targeted immediately after former coach Chuck Pagano was fired six weeks ago." Colts GM Chris Ballard "didn’t characterize the kind of candidate he would target when he held his post-McDaniels disaster news conference on Wednesday," but this shift is "not simply coincidental." This time, Ballard "went for proven leadership" (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 2/12). NFL Network's Mike Garafolo cited sources as saying that the Colts signed Reich to a "five-year deal" (, 2/11).

GOOD REVIEWS: In Indianapolis, Gregg Doyel writes, "Absolutely love the hire." But hiring a coach in the NFL is a "crapshoot," and the "only way to know Reich is a great head coach is if, or when, he proves it" (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 2/12). THE MMQB's Peter King notes Colts Owner Jim Irsay "happily approved" of the hiring. Reich also "won’t bring any drama with him." The Colts in the wake of the McDaniels drama "needed a stable partner" for QB Andrew Luck. They also needed an "ego-less partner for Ballard, and they needed a lead for a team that’s going to change a lot over the next two or three years." Reich is an "eternal optimist" and a "steady guy." This is a "good choice" (, 2/12). YAHOO SPORTS' Frank Schwab wrote timing is "everything, and Reich was the hottest candidate at the moment McDaniels backed out" (, 2/11). ESPN's Mike Golic said of the Colts, "Kudos to them for getting a guy that is willing" ("Golic & Wingo," ESPN Radio, 2/12).