In the reported feud between Chuck Pagano and Ryan Grigson, Pagano came away the victor Monday night. The embattled Indianapolis coach had answered questions about his job since the Colts lost their opening game this season but remained constant in his desire to coach the Colts. Many expected that Pagano would be let go and that owner Jim Irsay would make a big splash for his next head coach after a trainwreck 8-8 season. Ryan Grigson was expected to remain the GM through the forthcoming hiring process. But Monday evening, the tide appeared to shift in Pagano’s favor after hours in a meeting between Irsay and himself. That night, Irsay announced that Pagano would be staying with the Colts in a joint press conference with Pagano and Grigson.
It’s worthwhile to note Grigson’s demeanor during the conference. He had the look of a guy that absolutely did not want to be there. Contrast that with the look of Chuck Pagano and it’s not hard to figure out what happened. Pagano won. The entire feud has had the feel of watching two kids fight in school but become best friends once they got to the principal’s office. It’ll never be definitively known but it’s a safe bet that Pagano voiced Grigson’s numerous oversteps to Irsay. Irsay in all likelihood sided with Pagano and took some of Grigson’s authority away. Grigson’s frustration with this may have manifest itself in his body language at the press conference. Sympathetic fans of Pagano poured out their thoughts via social media and started the hashtag “chuckstay” that clearly got the attention of the Colts themselves:
Interestingly, there wasn’t one for Ryan Grigson.
Time will tell if Irsay made the right choice in sticking with both men that are now tied to the hip.It’ll be interesting to see if Irsay can continue to mediate a clearly shaky relationship between the two.Irsay has shown that he favors stability and continuity which has helped propel the Colts to being one of the NFL’s most successful franchises. The Colts still have holes to fill on their roster while the AFC South is proving to no longer be a cakewalk. But for now, Chuck Pagano gets to enjoy another victory. One that allowed him to keep his job.