Staff

Jim Irsay, Owner and CEO


Owner & CEO Jim Irsay enters his 43rd season with the Colts with an unwavering pursuit of bringing the storied franchise a fifth world championship. Having grown up within the organization, Irsay remains heavily invested in maintaining a winning tradition for Colts fans and the City of Indianapolis.

The Colts have witnessed unprecedented success since Irsay became the team’s owner in 1997. Indianapolis has compiled 13 winning seasons, nine division championships, two Super Bowl appearances and the team’s fourth world championship with a victory in Super Bowl XLI. The team’s 162-78 regular season record dating back to 1999 ranks second in the NFL. From 2000-09, the Colts produced 115 regular seasons wins, the most in a decade for any NFL club. Indianapolis also set an NFL record with 23-consecutive wins from 2008-09.

Irsay grew up with the Colts. His father, Robert, acquired the team when Jim was 13 years old. There’s sincere sentiment when Irsay talks about those years of living with the team during summer camp, watching every game and riding the team bus. After he graduated from SMU with a degree in broadcast journalism, he joined the franchise and worked in virtually every area, from ticket sales to public relations to football operations. When the Colts arrived in Indianapolis in 1984, Irsay was named general manager, the youngest to ever hold that job at age 24.

As other NFL teams have learned, it’s not easy to sustain a winning franchise. Despite the fact that the Colts made it to a Super Bowl during the 2009 season, the team suffered a tumultuous campaign two years later in which Indianapolis posted a 2-14 record. Irsay made two crucial hires to regain the organization’s prominence. General Manager Ryan Grigson and Head Coach Chuck Pagano were both inked in January of 2012 and brought a wealth of experience and knowledge that has led to back-to-back 11-5 seasons and playoff appearances from 2012-13. Last season, the Colts earned their first division title since 2010 with a perfect 6-0 mark against AFC South foes. The team also registered the second-largest comeback in NFL postseason history after erasing a 28-point second half deficit en route to a 45-44 victory against the Kansas City Chiefs in an AFC Wild Card Playoff meeting.

As the Colts approached the 2012 campaign, Grigson and Pagano built a team led by the No. 1 overall draft pick, Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck. With new talent from the draft and free agency combined with record-setting veterans, the Colts were ready to show fans a new level of play and energy.

What no one expected was the news that broke just three games into the regular season. Coach Pagano had been diagnosed with leukemia and was undergoing treatment at the IU Simon Cancer Center. The team, community and country rallied behind Coach Pagano and his eventual return to the field in the regular season finale. The Colts used Coach Pagano as motivation and extended the season for his return by reaching the AFC Playoffs. The nine-win improvement from the 2011 season is tied for the third-largest in NFL history.

During the 2014 off-season, the Colts took a dedicated approach to signing a majority of its own free agents while adding the likes of proven veterans ILB-D’Qwell Jackson (Cleveland), DE-Arthur Jones (Baltimore) and WR-Hakeem Nicks (New York Giants). In addition to a five-player draft class that bolstered both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball, Indianapolis is primed for another successful campaign.

This year also marks the team’s seventh season at Lucas Oil Stadium, one of America’s finest sports venues. All eyes were focused on the City of Indianapolis and the stadium when Super Bowl XLVI came to town. Largely regarded as one of the most successful Super Bowls ever, the event generated hundreds of millions of dollars in economic impact, not to mention the worldwide exposure for the city and state.

A hallmark of Jim Irsay’s tenure of stewardship was the 2006 season, when the Indianapolis Colts won Super Bowl XLI with a 29-17 victory over Chicago. Following its triumphant title return, the team was welcomed by a raucous crowd lining downtown streets and filling the RCA Dome. Irsay responded by sending the Lombardi Trophy on a tour throughout Indiana. The 50-stop, 3,130-mile tour gave fans an opportunity to see, touch and have pictures taken with the trophy. That fall, he created a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for fans to compete for one-of-five authentic Super Bowl rings. The effort raised more than $225,000 for charity and entertained thousands who witnessed the 10 finalists take their chance to pick one-of-five treasure chests that contained a ring inscribed with, “Colts Fan.”

An actively participating owner, Irsay chairs the League’s Legislative Committee and serves on both the Finance Committee and the Super Bowl Advisory Committee. He also has served on the Executive Committee of the Management Council and the Pro-College Relations Committee. Additionally, Irsay was a member of the Realignment Working Group and the Working Club Executive Committee that authored the NFL’s Collective Bargaining Agreement in 1993.

Irsay oversees the team’s extensive contributions program. In their home city and state, the Irsay family are active in supporting programs that address health and wellness, community development, cancer research and the arts.

Although football has been the focus of Irsay’s professional life, he is a music aficionado who collects rare guitars (including Jerry Garcia’s Tiger, the Fender Stratocaster that Bob Dylan played at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival and one of George Harrison’s guitars) and an Americana fan who collects rare historical documents, including Jack Kerouac’s original manuscript of On the Road.

Irsay has three daughters, Carlie Irsay-Gordon, Casey Foyt and Kalen Irsay, as well as five grandchildren. All three daughters represent the next generation of ownership for the Indianapolis Colts as each was promoted to the position of vice chair/owner in March of 2012.

In reflecting on the organization, Jim Irsay says, “I could not be prouder of our franchise. Both the football side and the front office have never worked better together. Our fans, far and near, will witness and enjoy many years of success on and off the field. We have the best fans in the NFL and our goal is to continue our position as one of the most consistently ‘best’ teams in the league.”

Jim Irsay, Owner and CEO


Owner & CEO Jim Irsay enters his 43rd season with the Colts with an unwavering pursuit of bringing the storied franchise a fifth world championship. Having grown up within the organization, Irsay remains heavily invested in maintaining a winning tradition for Colts fans and the City of Indianapolis.

The Colts have witnessed unprecedented success since Irsay became the team’s owner in 1997. Indianapolis has compiled 13 winning seasons, nine division championships, two Super Bowl appearances and the team’s fourth world championship with a victory in Super Bowl XLI. The team’s 162-78 regular season record dating back to 1999 ranks second in the NFL. From 2000-09, the Colts produced 115 regular seasons wins, the most in a decade for any NFL club. Indianapolis also set an NFL record with 23-consecutive wins from 2008-09.

Irsay grew up with the Colts. His father, Robert, acquired the team when Jim was 13 years old. There’s sincere sentiment when Irsay talks about those years of living with the team during summer camp, watching every game and riding the team bus. After he graduated from SMU with a degree in broadcast journalism, he joined the franchise and worked in virtually every area, from ticket sales to public relations to football operations. When the Colts arrived in Indianapolis in 1984, Irsay was named general manager, the youngest to ever hold that job at age 24.

As other NFL teams have learned, it’s not easy to sustain a winning franchise. Despite the fact that the Colts made it to a Super Bowl during the 2009 season, the team suffered a tumultuous campaign two years later in which Indianapolis posted a 2-14 record. Irsay made two crucial hires to regain the organization’s prominence. General Manager Ryan Grigson and Head Coach Chuck Pagano were both inked in January of 2012 and brought a wealth of experience and knowledge that has led to back-to-back 11-5 seasons and playoff appearances from 2012-13. Last season, the Colts earned their first division title since 2010 with a perfect 6-0 mark against AFC South foes. The team also registered the second-largest comeback in NFL postseason history after erasing a 28-point second half deficit en route to a 45-44 victory against the Kansas City Chiefs in an AFC Wild Card Playoff meeting.

As the Colts approached the 2012 campaign, Grigson and Pagano built a team led by the No. 1 overall draft pick, Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck. With new talent from the draft and free agency combined with record-setting veterans, the Colts were ready to show fans a new level of play and energy.

What no one expected was the news that broke just three games into the regular season. Coach Pagano had been diagnosed with leukemia and was undergoing treatment at the IU Simon Cancer Center. The team, community and country rallied behind Coach Pagano and his eventual return to the field in the regular season finale. The Colts used Coach Pagano as motivation and extended the season for his return by reaching the AFC Playoffs. The nine-win improvement from the 2011 season is tied for the third-largest in NFL history.

During the 2014 off-season, the Colts took a dedicated approach to signing a majority of its own free agents while adding the likes of proven veterans ILB-D’Qwell Jackson (Cleveland), DE-Arthur Jones (Baltimore) and WR-Hakeem Nicks (New York Giants). In addition to a five-player draft class that bolstered both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball, Indianapolis is primed for another successful campaign.

This year also marks the team’s seventh season at Lucas Oil Stadium, one of America’s finest sports venues. All eyes were focused on the City of Indianapolis and the stadium when Super Bowl XLVI came to town. Largely regarded as one of the most successful Super Bowls ever, the event generated hundreds of millions of dollars in economic impact, not to mention the worldwide exposure for the city and state.

A hallmark of Jim Irsay’s tenure of stewardship was the 2006 season, when the Indianapolis Colts won Super Bowl XLI with a 29-17 victory over Chicago. Following its triumphant title return, the team was welcomed by a raucous crowd lining downtown streets and filling the RCA Dome. Irsay responded by sending the Lombardi Trophy on a tour throughout Indiana. The 50-stop, 3,130-mile tour gave fans an opportunity to see, touch and have pictures taken with the trophy. That fall, he created a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for fans to compete for one-of-five authentic Super Bowl rings. The effort raised more than $225,000 for charity and entertained thousands who witnessed the 10 finalists take their chance to pick one-of-five treasure chests that contained a ring inscribed with, “Colts Fan.”

An actively participating owner, Irsay chairs the League’s Legislative Committee and serves on both the Finance Committee and the Super Bowl Advisory Committee. He also has served on the Executive Committee of the Management Council and the Pro-College Relations Committee. Additionally, Irsay was a member of the Realignment Working Group and the Working Club Executive Committee that authored the NFL’s Collective Bargaining Agreement in 1993.

Irsay oversees the team’s extensive contributions program. In their home city and state, the Irsay family are active in supporting programs that address health and wellness, community development, cancer research and the arts.

Although football has been the focus of Irsay’s professional life, he is a music aficionado who collects rare guitars (including Jerry Garcia’s Tiger, the Fender Stratocaster that Bob Dylan played at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival and one of George Harrison’s guitars) and an Americana fan who collects rare historical documents, including Jack Kerouac’s original manuscript of On the Road.

Irsay has three daughters, Carlie Irsay-Gordon, Casey Foyt and Kalen Irsay, as well as five grandchildren. All three daughters represent the next generation of ownership for the Indianapolis Colts as each was promoted to the position of vice chair/owner in March of 2012.

In reflecting on the organization, Jim Irsay says, “I could not be prouder of our franchise. Both the football side and the front office have never worked better together. Our fans, far and near, will witness and enjoy many years of success on and off the field. We have the best fans in the NFL and our goal is to continue our position as one of the most consistently ‘best’ teams in the league.”