Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay and general manager Ryan Grigson took to the podium at the Colts complex late Thursday afternoon to explain the firing of head coach Jim Caldwell.
Its the first time the team has taken this action with a field leader since the end of the 2001 season, when a 5-11 record led to the firing of Jim Mora.
Irsay said that he felt it was the time to change with the franchise, just as he did in 1998 when he named Bill Polian as the new general manager. Irsay and Grigson discussed the move with Caldwell this morning.
Grigson said that he spoke to Caldwell for seven hours after meeting him for the first time this week, but despite respecting him decided that change was necessary.
The general manager said that the rest of Caldwell's staff will be reevaluated in the coming weeks. Grigson said that he wants to meet with each assistant coach before he decides whether they stay or go.
When asked about what Grigson looks for in a new coach, he said first and foremost leadership without stating whether he wanted an offensive or defensive player. Grigson also stated that he has a short list of candidates for the position and isn't afraid to go to college or the pros to find the right candidate.
Grigson said there is no official timeline to get a new coach hired and the team plans to take its time to find the right candidate.
"This is serious and he's not going to be hurried or rushed," said Grigson of the timeline of firing a new coach.
During the news conference, Grigson says the team spoke to Steve Spagnuolo about being the team's defensive coordinator over the past week. Grigson said Caldwell was involved in those discussions and the team doesn't know if they'll move forward with Spagnuolo as the defensive coordinator.
On the subject of Peyton Manning, Grigson says there is nothing going on with the decision on the quarterback yet since there are many variables left with the situation. Grigson said he has yet to talk to Manning personally but has tried to reach out to him.
As far a the number one pick is concerned, Irsay said there has been no decision on who to draft yet. Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck is considered the likely pick, but Irsay said the team will do its research on what to do before a decision is made.
Irsay also hinted that a total house cleaning might not happen and that a number of veterans could be kept around.