Not so much in the sense that Reich is gambling on sports or anything. He is gambling on the team succeeding, and that is just what the Colts need.
Frank Reich wasn’t Chris Ballard’s first choice to replace Chuck Pagano. That was Josh McDaniels. But he should have been based on what he has done so far. Reich has already turned this franchise around from being a doormat to a true contender.
One of the biggest reasons for that is his willingness to gamble. His gambles might not always pan out, as we saw last year with the Houston game. But that was the turning point for the team where he really won the locker room. They saw he believed in them, so they believed in him back.
This season the Colts are a perfect 7 for 7 on fourth down conversions, including a couple of them deep in their own territory. That comes from Reich having supreme confidence in his offense to get the job done no matter where they are on the field.
It also comes from his use of analytics. The Colts have a couple of analytics people on staff that Reich has meetings with every week. He uses their data to weigh fourth down decisions at certain points of the game. Clearly that has worked out so far this season.
Because of his boldness and willingness to throw caution to the win, the locker room is totally his. The players fully back his decisions, no matter what they are. That leads to more trust and ultimately leads to more wins for the team.
We can’t expect the Colts to continue to be perfect on fourth down conversions all season long. But we can expect Reich to put the team in the best possible position to win every single week.