Colts will get similar Dungy

January, 21, 2008
Colts players won't see much difference in the return of Tony Dungy. He won't do much differently than in the past.

Dungy, who spent the past week deciding if he wanted to continue coaching, will spend most of the offseason in Indianapolis. He will work Monday through Thursday and then fly from Indianapolis to be with his family in Tampa on the weekends.

Colts ownership was willing to let him have almost all of February and March off, but Dungy is too committed to being a successful coach. He decided to work a reasonable schedule with his assistants and his players when they return in March for the offseason program.

Don't discount the possibility that he may want to coach again in 2009. Dungy is taking it year to year, and he's back for at least one more year.

Credit Colts owner Jim Irsay for being creative in keeping the Colts at the top of the league. He was willing to be flexible with time off and making his charter plane available in order to keep Dungy. He also was creative in how he named Dungy's eventual replacement. Irsay reached a deal with Jim Caldwell -- believed to be for around $2.4 million a year -- to keep him as the eventual replacement for Dungy. Irsay is committed to winning, and he knows Dungy is a winner and believes Caldwell will be, too. With Peyton Manning as the quarterback, the Colts are in good shape for the next few years.

The Colts felt as though they were going to lose Caldwell to the Atlanta Falcons. Caldwell interviewed for a couple of jobs. Caldwell pulled his name out of consideration when he started to work on a deal that would make him Dungy's eventual replacement. Losing Caldwell caused problems on the Falcons job search. It has now forced the Falcons to consider waiting past the end of the Super Bowl to interview Eagles defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo, who probably is the leading candidate for the job.

It appears that just about every assistant coach has committed to return to the Colts for the 2008 season. When the Colts lost their playoff game to the Chargers, they felt as though they lost their head coach and possibly an era. Players have to be relieved. They have the head coach they respect along with one of the best teaching staffs in pro football.

Washington moves: The Redskins' job search could get interesting in the next couple of days. Tuesday marks the two-week period since Joe Gibbs stepped down as head coach. Owner Dan Snyder has conducted some interviews, but he wanted to have a new coach in place after two weeks. If Snyder doesn't hire defensive coordinator Gregg Williams in the next couple of days, it could lead people to wonder if the Redskins are waiting for Spagnuolo, who is really becoming a hot head coaching candidate.



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