Jeff Saturday ‘shocked’ as rest of NFL over Colts’ bizarre hire

Many noticed the Frank Reich firing coming for the stumbling Colts. The resolution to interchange him with Jeff Saturday, not a lot.

Saturday, who performed for the Colts for over a decade, has no faculty or NFL teaching expertise. At the time of his hire, Saturday was an ESPN analyst and a Georgia highschool coach.

“Shocked would be an understatement,” Saturday mentioned at his introductory press convention on Monday, which was twice delayed and performed out whereas most of the NFL world was tuned into “Monday Night Football.”

“We had a conversation and it escalated quickly. He asked me and my wife. He told me he was going to meet with [general manager] Chris [Ballard] about it. As the day progressed, we finally came to a conclusion. It was a 12-hour whirlwind. It was a late call.”

The NFL world was shocked by the choice given the Colts legend’s lack of expertise and that the 47-year-old was solely related to the staff as an advisor. In the unusual press convention, nonetheless, proprietor Jim Irsay made it sound like getting Saturday was a coup for the franchise.

Jim Irsay (left) introduces Jeff Saturday as the brand new coach of the Colts.

“I’m glad he doesn’t have any NFL experience,” Irsay mentioned. “I’m glad he hasn’t realized the concern that’s on this league, as a result of it’s powerful for all our coaches. They’re afraid. They go to analytics and it will get troublesome.

“He doesn’t have all that. He doesn’t have that fear. And there was no other candidate. We were fortunate he was available. And he has tons of experience. He knows this game inside and out with relationships with coaches and players. I understand that he’s fully capable of doing this.”

The “no other candidate” remark is especially curious provided that the Colts had a former NFL coach in Gus Bradley as defensive coordinator, and one other in John Fox who’s an assistant. Is Bradley, who went a dismal 14-48 in 4 seasons as Jaguars coach, the long run of the franchise? Probably not, however he’s conversant in the gamers and will have helped ease the transition into the offseason.

Jeff Saturday at the Colts' introductory press conference on Nov. 7, 2022.
Jeff Saturday on the Colts’ introductory press convention on Nov. 7, 2022.

Furthermore, Irsay insisted that “there’s no question” GM Chris Ballard — who constructed this flawed 3-5-1 roster and is behind the rotating door of placeholder quarterbacks that has plagued the franchise — will likely be again subsequent season.

“The guy is a winner and he’s been immensely successful.” Irsay mentioned. “No one is ideal on this recreation. We all lose rather a lot on this league. You know what number of photographs Michael Jordan has missed? You know what number of video games Michael Jordan has lost?

“I mean, in this league it’s tough and sometimes you don’t understand how fortunate you are when you’re around success because you think that’s the norm. But it’s not. And he fits right into that culture.”

The hope is Saturday can discover a resolution to Indy’s most obtrusive downside, an offensive line that has allowed a league-high 35 sacks in 9 video games. It had been one of the league’s high models from 2018 by final season however has been in flux most of this season.

Sam Ehlinger tosses the ball during the Colts' loss to the Patriots on Nov. 6, 2022.
Sam Ehlinger tosses the ball through the Colts’ loss to the Patriots on Nov. 6, 2022.

On Sunday, throughout a dull 26-3 loss to the Patriots, the Colts pulled proper guard Matt Pryor and left sort out Dennis Kelly and changed them with Will Fries and rookie Bernhard Raimann in yet one more try to enhance the move safety.

“We’ve tried to hire Jeff as a coach a couple of times, the timing didn’t work out,” Ballard mentioned. “It doesn’t take long to figure out he’s got leadership, real special leadership in him. So for this eight-game stretch and where we’re at, we thought it would be a really good fit for us.”

— With AP

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