Colts to Narrow HC Candidate List, Consider Third Round of Interviews

Jim Irsay

Getty Colts owner Jim Irsay has been involved in the team's second round of head coaching interviews.

The Indianapolis Colts have spent their offseason interviewing several candidates for its head coaching vacancy. Soon, the second stage of the interview process will conclude and the team is “considering a rare Round 3 as well,” per NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo and Ian Rapoport.

New York Daily News Giants beat writer Pat Leonard wrote on Twitter that “it’s not clear who all Indy intends to include in Round 3, how long it would take & what impact that would have on the process.” Leonard also touted Wink Martindale as a “frontrunner” for the Colts head coaching gig.

According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, each head coaching interview during the first round was conducted virtually. General manager Chris Ballard has led the search for the Colts’ next head coach and has been involved in every step of the process, while Colts owner Jim Irsay became involved in Round 2 of interviews.

Colts’ Head Coaching Candidates

According to Colts Wire’s Kevin Hickey, Indianapolis has already interviewed Martindale, interim head coach Jeff Saturday, Denver Broncos defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero, Los Angeles Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris, Cincinnati Bengals offensive coordinator Brian Callahan and Green Bay Packers special teams coordinator Rich Bisaccia. It was also reported that Detroit Lions defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn received a second interview on February 2 and Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator Shane Steichen has one scheduled.

Lead analyst for Zach Hicks tweeted that he has a “general feel” that the Colts’ finalists are Morris and Callahan, also noting “Steichen maybe too, but it’s tough with the timing.” Hicks does not think Evero, Saturday, Bisaccia or Martindale will get the job.

Hicks also tweeted that Morris’ reputation and experience and Callahan’s ability to cater to quarterback strengths are reasons as to why he believes the two coordinators are finalists.

The Broncos, Carolina Panthers and Houston Texans are three teams who have already addressed their respective head coaching vacancies this offseason. Houston signed one of the Colts’ candidates, DeMeco Ryans, after he canceled an interview with Indianapolis on January 22. The other two teams still needing a head coach are the Colts and Arizona Cardinals.

Colts to Wrap Up Second Round of Interviews

ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweeted that Steichen would be interviewed by the Colts on February 4 to conclude Indianapolis’ second round of head coaching interviews. Adding more context, Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer wrote that Indianapolis is sending “a contingent” to Philadelphia to speak to Steichen, who leaves with the Eagles to fly to Arizona for the Super Bowl on February 5.

After the Colts interview Steichen on February 4, both parties will be unable to contact each other until after the Super Bowl. The Herald Bulletin’s George Bremer noted that the earliest date Indianapolis could speak to Steichen in a potential third round of interviews is February 13, per NFL rules.

The Colts are no stranger to having to delay interviews with a head coaching candidate, as they could only interview a select number of candidates during conference championship week due to playoff rules. Per The Athletic’s Zak Keefer, NFL teams interviewing coaches who advanced to the conference championship round had to wait from January 23 until January 30 to speak.

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