Colts HC Chuck Pagano released the following statement regarding the team’s decision to hire Chris Ballard as their next GM.
Coach Pagano on the hiring of GM Chris Ballard: pic.twitter.com/jIED60yb2C
— Indianapolis Colts (@Colts) January 30, 2017
The Indianapolis Colts announced Sunday that they’ve officially hired Chiefs executive Chris Ballard as their new GM.
- Ian Rapoport reports that Ballard is planning to keep Chuck Pagano in place as the team’s head coach for the 2017 season.
- Yesterday, Jason La Canfora reported that Ballard actually prefers to hire Chiefs ST coach Dave Toub as the team’s head coach, so this could be something to watch after the 2017 season.
It became clear in recent days that Ballard was the clear favorite to land the Colts’ job, despite some early talk that they could stay in house and go with Jimmy Raye III.
Indianapolis scheduled a follow-up interview with Ballard and it appears as though he was able to seal the deal.
In total, the Colts interviewed six candidates for the job including Ballard, Raye III, Packers executive Eliot Wolf, Seahawks executives Trent Kirchner and Scott Fitterer and Vikings assistant GM George Paton.
Ballard was hired by the Chiefs back in 2013 as their director of player personnel and was promoted to director of football operations a few years later. A number of teams have shown interest in Ballard over the past few years but he turned down some opportunities to remain with the Colts.
Interestingly enough, Ballard did now interview for the 49ers’ GM position a few weeks ago, but it looks like the prospect of building a team around Andrew Luck was too much for him to pass up.
Ballard will be tasked with rebuilding a Colts’ defense that has struggled to develop talent in recent years and continue to make strides in terms of protecting Luck.
Either way, this a big addition for the Colts and it will be interested to see what Ballard is capable of doing with the opportunity.