The Indianapolis Colts officially concluded the second round of their head coaching interviews on February 4 after the team sent “a contingent” to speak to Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator Shane Steichen.
Indianapolis began the interview process with 14 candidates in Round 1. That number was shaved down to eight in Round 2, with Steichen being the last interview.
Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer tweeted that the Colts have been intentionally thorough during the head coaching search. He wrote that Round 2 interviews have been “creative and LONG,” with some even lasting as long as 12 hours.
Among the remaining candidates includes interim head coach Jeff Saturday, who finished 2022 with a 1-7 record leading the Colts. Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio wrote that the longer Saturday is involved in the interview process, “the greater the chance he gets the job.”
When Will Colts Hire a HC?
The Colts have been fully engaged in the search for their next head coach since January 9, the first day of the team’s offseason.
General manager Chris Ballard led the team’s first round of virtual interviews, but each interview during Round 2 has been held in person. According to Breer, Colts owner Jim Irsay has been included in the second round and has “spent 1-on-1 time with each candidate.”
Now that Round 2 of interviews is over, Ballard and Irsay have some decision making to do. NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo tweeted that Indianapolis is considering hosting a third round of interviews. If that does happen, it’s expected that Indianapolis will take their time to find the right match — just as it’s done all offseason.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweeted that a source told him the Colts might not announce a new head coach “until later this week or even after the Super Bowl.”
After a head coach is decided upon, the rest of the Colts’ coaching staff will be sorted out. The Athletic’s Zak Keefer said some Indianapolis assistants “are under contract and could stay, but it’d be the new coach’s decision (in theory at least).”
Round 3 To Begin Soon?
With the Colts potentially holding a rare third round of interviews next week, it’s important to remember that Steichen won’t be able to speak to Indianapolis again until after the Super Bowl (February 13). If Steichen is named one of the final candidates, the Colts will likely prolong the HC search even further.
Steichen is not the only Colts’ coaching candidate remaining in the NFL playoffs, however. Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy was interviewed during Round 1 of interviews, but was not scheduled for Round 2. Despite that, CBS Sports’ Josina Anderson tweeted on February 2 that Bieniemy remains a Colts’ HC candidate.
It’s currently unclear how many candidates will make it through to the potential third round of interviews. Currently, the Colts and Arizona Cardinals are the two remaining teams without a head coach.
Houston, Denver and Carolina — the other three teams with head coaching openings this offseason — have already addressed their vacancies. The Panthers signed former Colts head coach Frank Reich on January 26, while the Texans hired DeMeco Ryans and the Broncos traded for Sean Payton on January 31.