INDIANAPOLIS – Jim Irsay needed just a little more than a week to find his next general manager.
Longtime NFL scout/personnel man Chris Ballard will take his first chance at leading an entire operation of a professional football team as the next general manager of the Indianapolis Colts.
The Colts officially hired Ballard as their new GM on Sunday evening.
Ballard arrives in Indianapolis after four years working with the Kansas Chiefs.
Since Ballard joined the Chiefs in 2013, Kansas City has been one of the AFC's most consistent teams.
The Chiefs have won at least nine games in each of the last four seasons (43-21 overall record) and earned the No. 2 seed in this year's postseason, after winning the toughest division in football.
Despite not having a perennial Pro Bowl quarterback, the Chiefs have achieved recent success with an extremely balanced roster and very few weaknesses.
The Chiefs have a roster littered with homegrown players.
With Ballard in Kansas City, the Chiefs have drafted Pro Bowlers TE-Travis Kelce, CB-Marcus Peters and KR/WR-Tyreek Hill.
Ballard's time in the NFL includes a dozen years with the Chicago Bears, his previous stop just before Kansas City. As primarily an area scout for the Bears, Ballard helped build a Chicago roster that won at least seven games in 10 of his 12 seasons there (including a Super Bowl trip in 2006, a game won by the Colts).
The fact that Ballard even interviewed for the opening in Indianapolis is an indication of how this job is viewed around the NFL.
Over the past few years, Ballard has been a coveted GM candidate, with the Bears, Titans and 49ers all showing interest.
Ballard was hired as Kansas City's director of player personnel back in 2013. He was promoted two years later to director of football operations.
Serving under Chiefs' general manager John Dorsey, Ballard was thought very highly of in the Kansans City organization.
"Chris is a good example of a guy who's a team player," Chiefs’ president Mark Donovan said earlier this month. "You look at our entire organization, you look at everybody across the board on the football side, ops side, coaching side, players and I'd like to say business side as well — we're all in this together. Chris is one of those guys."
Ballard was one of six candidates the Colts interviewed after parting ways with Ryan Grigson a week ago Saturday.
Stay tuned to Colts.com for a press conference announcement with Ballard.
- The analysis from those producing content on Colts.com does not necessarily represent the thoughts of the Indianapolis Colts organization. Any conjecture, analysis or opinions formed by Colts.com content creators is not based on inside knowledge gained from team officials, players or staff.*