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Colts agree to terms with Patriots' McDaniels for head coach gig

February 6, 2018
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Josh McDaniels (AP photo)

As expected now that the NFL season has come to an end, the Indianapolis Colts have announced that New England Patriots Offensive Coordinator Josh McDaniels will be the team’s next head coach.

The Colts made a brief announcement Tuesday morning on the team’s website, saying that the organization and McDaniels had come to terms. It comes a little more than three weeks after word leaked the sides were close to a deal.

A press conference is scheduled for Wednesday. Contract terms were not immediately available.

McDaniels, 41, has been one of the league's most coveted coaching talents since returning to New England as offensive coordinator in 2012. Since then, the Pats have reached six consecutive conference championship games and won two Super Bowls.

McDaniels’ tenure ended Sunday on a disappointing note, as the Philadelphia Eagles defeated the Patriots in the Super Bowl, 41-33. The Colts had interviewed McDaniels twice in recent weeks for the position but were prohibited from making an announcement about McDaniels until New England’s season was over.

With Indianapolis, McDaniels inherits an injured franchise quarterback, Andrew Luck, and a backup, Jacoby Brissett, who he worked with for almost 16 months in New England.

McDaniels began his NFL coaching career as a personnel assistant for the Patriots in 2001. He became a defensive assistant in 2003 before being named quarterbacks coach in 2004 and offensive coordinator in 2005.

His previous experience as a head coach was with the Denver Broncos. He struggled to an 11-17 record in 2009 and midway through the 2010 season with Denver, where he didn't have a franchise quarterback.

He wound up as the St. Louis Rams' offensive coordinator in 2011 before returning to New England.

The Colts job opened Dec. 31 when owner Jim Irsay fired Chuck Pagano within hours of the end of the season. Pagano was in charge for six seasons, and Indianapolis missed the playoffs each of the last three.

Indianapolis' near-future depends heavily on Luck's health.

In November, one month after cutting short his throwing program, the top overall pick in the 2012 draft went on season-ending injured reserve. Luck then went to Europe, where he continued to rehab his throwing shoulder, and didn't return to team headquarters until the final days of the season.
It's still unclear if Luck will be able to return to his starting position.

A healthy Luck would make Indianapolis one of the league's more attractive jobs because general manager Chris Ballard also has the No. 3 draft pick and almost $90 million to spend in free agency.

 

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