Jim Irsay made no bones about his words Wednesday when he characterized the season finale for the Colts. Irsay, whose family has owned the team since 1972, even before the team was in Indianapolis, tweeted a statement Wednesday expressing disappointment with the team’s performance this season.
In the statement, Irsay said the team “ended our season in perhaps the worst way possible,” referring to the team’s loss to Jacksonville 26-11 at the end of the season, a game in which they were widely favored against a team. who, despite winning, still has the No. 1 pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.
The Colts’ fights in Jacksonville against the Jaguars are nothing new. In fact, the Colts haven’t won in Duval County since Dec. 13, 2015 and are 0-7 in that span. For context, they have a winning record against all other teams in the same time frame.
Back-to-back losses to end the regular season and failure to make the postseason led Irsay to meet with head coach Frank Reich and general manager Chris Ballard on Monday. They seem to be on the same page heading into the off-season.
But despite the lengthy post detailing the Colts’ downfall, how much did Irsay actually say?
First, he softened the blow of failing to make the postseason by reminding people that the team came out of a 0-3 hole to start the season. That supposedly deserves a pat on the back.
Then he promised “to do whatever it takes to put us in a position to win next year and for years to come.”
Can Irsay keep that promise? The Colts will have roughly $ 46 million in salary cap flexibility, but they have 28 players, many of whom were key contributors to this year’s team, with contracts to expire. Therefore, they do not have as much room for maneuver as might be thought.
Carson Wentz Eats $ 28 Million of Share Capital Next Season; however, head coach Frank Reich was hesitant to commit to the QB in the future.
“We have to be better in the passing game,” Reich said. “It was definitely below our standards, and there are multiple reasons for that. We have to take care of that as coaches and players. “
Reich knows Wentz well from when the two were together in Philadelphia when Wentz was the quarterback and Reich was the offensive coordinator. Wentz posted good numbers on the surface, completing 62.4 percent of his passes for 3,563 yards, 27 touchdowns and seven interceptions.
But, he averaged only 209 yards per game and the team ranked 19th in yards per attempt and 26th in total yards, despite having the league’s leading running back in Jonathan Taylor.
To add insult to injury, Indy also sent his first-round pick to Philadelphia to acquire Wentz, who was a conditional second-round pick. But since Wentz played 75% of the team’s plays this season, it turned into a first round. That means the Colts’ top pick doesn’t make it until the second round, 47th overall.
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However, Irsay and the Colts bosses have proven resilient, and the Colts owner has taken some time to reflect and is ready to act.
“It is clear that we did not have the right things,” said Irsay. “We couldn’t perform at the level that we were certainly capable of.”