Chuck Pagano’s Indianapolis Colts put together an embarrassing performance at home against Jacksonville yesterday, getting shutout as an organization for the first time since December of 1993. They faced a Jacksonville offense that was without Leonard Fournette and allowed Blake Bortles to carve them up. They lost the one bright spot on defense–Malik Hooker–to a season-ending knee injury.
Yes, Andrew Luck is out, and that situation looks to have been completely mismanaged and botched from the top down by new GM Chris Ballard. But if you lose a quarterback and you are the worst team in the league, then I’m not sure there’s much an argument to get to stay. Let’s face it, Chuck Pagano’s best season as coach was the interim season where Bruce Arians took the team to playoffs while Pagano was receiving chemo treatments and the team was rallying around their new coach being out. That season is officially credited to Pagano’s record, and it was now five years ago. They made a championship game two years later, but the trajectory of the team has been steadily going down, and there is little evidence that Pagano makes any of it better.
The Indianapolis Colts have been outscored by over 100 points this year, making them one of just 19 teams to do that since 1990. Yes, they have two wins: over the 0-7 49ers at home in overtime, and over the 0-7 Browns at home by 3 points. Looking over the remaining schedule, I’m not sure you can find a win.
The Colts have been beaten by 27 or more points 8 times over the last five seasons, more than any other franchise in the league. The team that was second-most just beat them down 27-0. That many complete failures to show up has to fall on someone. Chuck Pagano seems like a good candidate.
Ryan Grigson is gone, fired after last year. The new GM is in his honeymoon period, but it gets shorter and shorter the longer he keeps the stench of Pagano’s tenure on him.
Here’s my list of the guys on the hot seat and most likely to be fired first:
- Chuck Pagano
- Hue Jackson: He’s 1-22 as Cleveland coach. He’s benching QBs left and right. Where’s the evidence he needs to be part of the rebuild?
- Ben McAdoo: the shine of the playoff season in year one is already gone. He was the continuation hire of the previous regime. A continued collapse could mean he’s not safe.
- Marvin Lewis: The Bengals are 2-4. He’s never won a playoff game, and he’s 15 years again. If they are eliminated from playoff consideration, the only thing keeping him employed is that his owner is Mike Brown.
- Dirk Koetter: 2-4 start, against increased expectations that Tampa Bay should be competing for a playoff spot. The defense has been terrible. He’s 58-years-old. If the Bucs finish below .500 I think he’s in trouble.