The Indianapolis Colts have begun to shrink their rather large pool of head coaching candidates this week. The team had been interviewing candidates virtually up to this point, and now the next phase of interviews will be in-person with owner Jim Irsay present.
The initial candidates pool started with 13 qualified candidates. Here is the big list of reasonable candidates that the Colts have either talked to or planned to talk to virtually:
- Ben Johnson, Detroit Lions Offensive Coordinator (withdrew name)
- Aaron Glenn, Detroit Lions Defensive Coordinator
- Shane Steichen, Philadelphia Eagles Offensive Coordinator
- Eric Bienemy, Kansas City Chiefs Offensive Coordinator
- Bubba Ventrone, Indianapolis Colts Special Teams Coordinator
- Raheem Morris, Los Angeles Rams Defensive Coordinator
- Ejiro Evero, Denver Broncos Defensive Coordinator
- Rich Bisaccia, Green Bay Packers Special Teams Coordinator
- Brian Callahan, Cincinnati Bengals Offensive Coordinator
- Dan Quinn, Dallas Cowboys Defensive Coordinator
- Mike Kafka, New York Giants Offensive Coordinator
- Wink Martindale, New York Giants Defensive Coordinator
- DeMeco Ryans, San Francisco 49ers Defensive Coordinator (on hold)
Of these 13 names, Dallas Cowboys’ Defensive Coordinator Dan Quinn and Denver Broncos’ Defensive Coordinator Ejiro Evero are among the qualified candidates to receive in-person interviews. Another defensive coach has been added to that group, with Los Angeles Rams’ Defensive Coordinator Raheem Morris also reportedly scheduling an in-person interview this week.
ESPN insider Dan Graziano reported this today:
“Others who have been requested for second interviews include Broncos DC Ejiro Evero and Rams RC Raheem Morris, per sources.” Graziano tweeted out.
For Morris, there is a lot to like about the defensive-minded coach. He has been around the league for over 20 years, winning a pair of Super Bowls in his career (2002 with the Buccaneers and 2021 with the Rams). He also has experience working on both sides of the ball, as he was the Atlanta Falcons’ WR coach during their Super Bowl run back in 2016.
The other intriguing aspect of Morris’ candidacy is the type of staff he could build. He has worked under the Sean McVay/Kyle Shanahan tree for the better part of the last decade, so it makes sense to see him pull some coaches from that umbrella.
Some potential coordinator hires for Morris could be longtime play-callers such as Jay Gruden or Greg Olson, or he could go the younger route with names such as Mike LaFleur or Zac Robinson. On the defensive side, Morris could potentially retain Gus Bradley or look to bring Rams’ DL coach Eric Henderson over to work under him.
Overall, there is a lot to like about Morris and his potential as the Colts’ next head coach. Will they go with this highly qualified candidate or make a mockery of the process by hiring an underqualified nepotism baby instead? That still remains to be seen.
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