This is awful.
Historically bad news broke a few minutes ago – New England Patriots former offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels will return to that position after agreeing to become the next head coach of the Indianapolis Colts.
This is like Bill Belichick becoming the head coach of the Jets before deciding to take the gig with the Patriots – but in reverse.
It’s a little more like the Chicago Bears announcing that Dave McGinnis would become their next head coach in 1999 only to have McGinnis pivot when he heard the announcement had been made before he had agreed to terms.
The Colts have had some bizarre moments through their 34 seasons in Indianapolis, but nothing quite like this.
This is a debacle merged with a disaster wrapped in a calamity. Minus a Hail Mary to a Tony Dungy level coach – or Dungy himself – the Colts will have to settle for a coach they had chosen not to hire, and then sell fans on that version of the future as what they wanted all along.
Clearly, Colts GM Chris Ballard trusted the wrong guy, and that begs the question, why doesn’t Chris Ballard know who to trust – especially when he and McDaniels share the same agent?
It appears that after agreeing to come to Indy, McDaniels was wooed by Patriots owner Robert Kraft, who promised McDaniels more money and the head coach position if Belichick leaves after the 2018 season.
Whatever the reason, the reality is the worst level of embarrassment for a Colts franchise that has been working hard to put humiliation behind it.
Feeling terrible for Ballard is a legitimate human response to tonight’s devastating news, but this is a mess of his own creation. And again – Ballard and McDaniels share an agent.
How could this happen, and what can be done to save it?
The only answer to the first question is incompetence, and the answer to the second is getting outside – way outside – the box and finding a way to hit a home run the obscures our memory of this miserable night.
A friend called just now and said the Colts need to call Belichick and offer him everything. As preposterous as it sounds, that might be all that could save Ballard’s bacon.
This is a hire Ballard has known he would need to make for at least a half year, and it goes laughing stock level sideways? Hiring a coach after the 2017 season is the biggest responsibility Ballard will likely have as GM and it just blew up in his face.
As the Colts try to figure out what the hell they are going to do next, the rest of the NFL laughs.
Meanwhile, Colts fans hope their favorite team didn’t just become a more ridiculous version of the Jets.
Kent Sterling hosts the fastest growing sportstalk show in Indianapolis on CBS Sports 1430 every weekday from 3p-7p, and writes about Indiana sports at kentsterling.com.