Colts and Chuck Pagano ‘Continue to Discuss Future’; Some Optimism From Coach’s Camp

Jan 3, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indianapolis Colts coach Chuck Pagano on the sidelines against the Tennessee Titans at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 3, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indianapolis Colts coach Chuck Pagano on the sidelines against the Tennessee Titans at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Indianapolis Colts–and namely owner Jim Irsay continue to discuss the future with head coach Chuck Pagano in order to fully evaluate whether the latter is still the right man for the job:

Irsay and Pagano met right before 3 PM EST at Colts headquarters and talks have been ongoing; however, the organization announced that no decision would be made Monday on  Pagano’s future with the team. However, the longer Irsay’s evaluation drags out, the more optimistic that Pagano’s camp is about the possibility of him returning next season:

Jan 3, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano reacts during their game against the Tennessee Titans in the second half at Lucas Oil Stadium. The Indianapolis Colts defeated the Tennessee Titans, 30-24. Mandatory Credit: Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 3, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano reacts during their game against the Tennessee Titans in the second half at Lucas Oil Stadium. The Indianapolis Colts defeated the Tennessee Titans, 30-24. Mandatory Credit: Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports /

If a decision had already been made, the Colts presumably would’ve already made it.

While Irsay’s deliberation could be construed as indecisiveness from atop the organization, it could also simply show that he’s performing his due diligence regarding Pagano and leaving no stone unturned.

According to PFT’s Mike Florio, he speculates whether Irsay could also be probing Pagano for details about his tumultuous relationship with general manager Ryan Grigson–whose future with the team has also yet to be determined.

In 4 seasons with the Colts, Pagano had 3 consecutive 11 win seasons before enduring his worst season at 8-8 and missing the playoffs for the first time.

Overall, Pagano is 20-4 (.833) against the woeful AFC South in 4 seasons (.826), yet 21-19 (0.525) against everyone else. Overall, he’s 41-23 (.641), which is good, but could admittedly be better, having had the luxury of playing in arguably the league’s worst division during his Colts coaching tenure. 

Nevertheless, his players still love playing for him, and he’s won a lot of football games–having still finished .500 this season despite losing Andrew Luck for 9 games due to injury.

A decision will likely be imminent–likely as soon as Tuesday. 

Not only could the Colts miss out on other coaching candidates by holding onto Pagano only to dismiss him, but it’s also preventing the latter from seeking out other head coaching opportunities elsewhere–which means both sides ultimately lose by prolonging this process.

That being said, if Irsay is sincere in his willingness to fully evaluate Pagano and give him a chance to fight his case to remain head coach, then an extra 24 hours of deliberation really won’t hurt either side going forward.

Jan 3, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indianapolis Colts coach Chuck Pagano salutes the fans as he walks off the field after the game against the Tennessee Titans at Lucas Oil Stadium. Indianapolis defeats Tennessee 30-24. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 3, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indianapolis Colts coach Chuck Pagano salutes the fans as he walks off the field after the game against the Tennessee Titans at Lucas Oil Stadium. Indianapolis defeats Tennessee 30-24. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports /