Posts Tagged ‘Indianapolis Colts’

The Montreal Alouettes have signed former NFL quarterback Josh Freeman to a two-year contract, David William Naylor of TSN reports.

Freeman last played in the NFL in 2015, starting a Week 17 matchup for the Indianapolis Colts due to several injuries at the position.

The 29-year-old was drafted in the first round by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2009 and was their starter for most of the next four seasons.

He was released in 2013 after a poor start to the season and struggled to regain his standing in the league.

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The Indianapolis Colts‘ search for a new head coach is underway.

Chuck Pagano was fired Sunday after leading the team to a disappointing 4-12 season. The franchise is now looking for an ideal candidate to replace him.

“I’m really excited about where we’re headed and the direction that we’re going,” team owner Jim Irsay said Monday in a joint press conference with general manager Chris Ballard, Stephen Holder of the Indianapolis Star reports.

“I couldn’t be more excited. I’ve had a chance to work with Chris and to see what kind of general manager the Colts have, it’s something that reinforces the hire that was made.”

The duo said they won’t look specifically for an offensive or defensive specialist, and previous head coaching experience will not be a requirement for the job. Ballard said the entire interview process – including the candidates – will be kept internal.

But, he does have one specific ask:

“I want somebody who wants to come to the Indianapolis Colts. I don’t want somebody who’s just coming here for Andrew Luck,” Ballard said, according to RTV6 Indianapolis.

Luck, the franchise quarterback, missed the entire 2017 season after undergoing offseason shoulder surgery. He recently returned from a rehab stint in the Netherlands and will resume throwing soon.

Irsay believes Luck will make a triumphant return.

“If you told me last year that he would’ve missed the whole year, I would not have believed you. Would not,” Irsay said, according to Holder.

“I have no doubt in my mind that Andrew is going to come back. That kid is a special kid. Special. He was born to do great things in the National Football League,” he added, via Mike Wells of ESPN.

Indiana lawmaker Rep. Milo Smith, R-Columbus, is pushing a bill that would force the Indianapolis Colts to offer refunds to any ticket purchasers who are offended by a member of the team kneeling during the national anthem, according to Justin L. Mack and Kaitlin L. Lange of The Indianapolis Star.

Smith says fans who feel disrespected by the kneeling should be able to ask for a refund during the first quarter of any game.

“To me when they take a knee during the national anthem, it’s not respecting the national anthem or our country,” Smith said. “Our government isn’t perfect, but it’s still the best country in the world and I think we need to be respectful of it.”

Smith’s bill wouldn’t require the Colts to issue refunds if it’s the visiting team enacting the protest.

Vice President Mike Pence walked out of a game in October when the visiting San Francisco 49ers took part in a team demonstration with 23 players kneeling during the anthem.

The executive director of ACLU Indiana, Jane Henegar, said Smith’s bill could be a constitutional violation.

“In effect by passing the law, government would be weighing in … and fining political speech by the Indianapolis Colts,” Henegar said. “It seems like the worst thing that could happen is government weighing in and trying to control in any direction the political speech of private actors.”

Smith responded by noting his bill doesn’t prohibit players from taking a knee.

Amid reports that Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck is visiting specialists to determine why he’s experiencing soreness in his surgically repaired throwing shoulder, he’s not close to returning to practice with the team, Stephen Holder of the Indianapolis Star reports.

Head coach Chuck Pagano officially ruled out Luck for this week’s practices, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

Luck made his much-anticipated return to practice in early October, but had a setback, the team announced on Oct. 18, and hasn’t practiced since.

While the Colts have not made any decision on Luck’s status moving forward, current circumstances suggest the possibility of him playing in any games this season is also in jeopardy.

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Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck won’t be going anywhere, according to his agent, Will Wilson.

Early Wednesday morning, ESPN’s Mike Greenberg said there has been a gap between Luck and the Colts, and the franchise quarterback’s time in Indianapolis could be coming to an end.

“Quite simply and succinctly, there’s no truth to that comment at all,” Wilson said, according to ESPN.

“Andrew did a long-term deal and he did it for a reason: He wants to be with the Colts and he’s committed to the Colts. It’s as simple as that. He looks forward to the opportunity to play when he’s ready. He wants to get out there when he’s ready, obviously. He’s just going through rehab; it’s the process he’s going through.”

On Wednesday’s show, Greenberg cited a “general sense” from around the league that Luck is growing tired of the Colts.

“Even with that enormous contract and that enormous talent, we could be seeing, right before our eyes, the end of the Andrew Luck era in Indianapolis,” he said.

Luck signed a six-year, $140-million contract in June 2016.

He’ll remain sidelined for Week 2 following offseason shoulder surgery, after watching his team get dismantled 46-9 by the Los Angeles Rams in the season opener.

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Robert Mathis boasts an enviable resume. The pass-rusher spent his entire 14-year career with the Indianapolis Colts, was named to six Pro Bowls, led the league in sacks in 2013, and won a Super Bowl in 2006.

But it’s that last accomplishment that still eats at Mathis, who believes the Peyton Manning-era Colts should have more than one ring to their name.

“Looking back on that team, I feel a mix of pride, and, I’ll admit, the slightest bit of disappointment,” Mathis wrote in the Players’ Tribune on Friday. “I’m so proud of what we accomplished during our era of Colts football, but I think every person, down to the last man, would tell you that he expected to win more than one ring in Indy. If there’s any regret I have from my career, it’s that.

The Colts made another Super Bowl in 2009, losing to the New Orleans Saints in heartbreaking fashion.

Mathis’ career extended into the Andrew Luck era, and while the Colts appeared on track to contend for another Super Bowl before the sack master’s time in the NFL was over, Indy quickly fell apart, missing the playoffs in 2015 and 2016 before Mathis hung up his cleats this offseason.

While Mathis is disappointed to have only one ring on his hand, he still has the Colts’ win over the Chicago Bears in Super Bowl XLI to reminisce about in his retirement.

“Not to sound arrogant, but after we beat the Patriots in that game, the Super Bowl almost seemed like a formality.” Mathis wrote. “The Bears were a great team, but that was our game. They said we couldn’t play in the elements, and all we did was hold the Bears offense to a single touchdown in a huge rainstorm to win that game.

“After far too long, we finally got Peyton his ring.”

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The Indianapolis Colts will unveil a statue of Peyton Manning on Oct. 7, but his former coach Jim Mora won’t be there.

Mora, Manning’s head coach for the first four years of his career, revealed Wednesday that his former quarterback invited him to the event, but that he turned down the invitation.

“I told him I wasn’t going to come,” Mora said on WNDE radio’s “Query & Schultz” show, according to Dakota Crawford of the Indianapolis Star.

“I had reasons. I would love to come back there, but because of the way I left the Colts, my relationship with (former Colts general manager Bill) Polian, I don’t know. I just wouldn’t feel that I would feel comfortable being there.”

Mora coached Indianapolis for four seasons, going 32-32 while leading the team to the playoffs twice, where it went 0-2. Yet, it was a staffing dispute that led to his departure from the team, as he was fired for refusing to cut ties with defensive coordinator Vic Fangio.

“That’s exactly true,” Mora said. “It was either fire Vic of fire me. I was asked by Bill Polian – I was told by Bill Polian – he wanted me to fire Vic Fangio. I said, ‘Well, he doesn’t deserve to be fired. He’s an outstanding coach, was then and he still is.’ So we had talks with (owner) Jim Irsay, it came down and I wouldn’t do it …

“I couldn’t fire a friend or a coach that I felt was very qualified that didn’t deserve to be fired. So I got fired. That was it.”

It was Mora’s last coaching job in the NFL. He was replaced in Indianapolis by Tony Dungy, and Manning ultimately finished his tenure in Indy being coached by Jim Caldwell.