The Indianapolis Colts today hired Ryan Grigson as the team's new general manager.
"Ryan brings to the Colts an outstanding NFL personnel history and a record of achievement," said Colts Owner & CEO Jim Irsay. "He is a bright and gifted administrator who is the right fit for our organization. He is the right person for the challenges of his new role, and I am confident he can help us continue the winning tradition we have enjoyed, and that our fans have appreciated through the years."
Grigson comes to the Colts following a nine-year stint with the Philadelphia Eagles, most recently as the director of player personnel from 2010-11. He began his NFL scouting career as the national combine scout and area scout for the St. Louis Rams (1999-2002). Grigson then joined the Eagles as a regional scout (2003-05) prior to being elevated as the team's director of college scouting (2006-09).
"I'm excited for the challenge and I'm excited to know I have the support of someone like Jim Irsay who is a great owner and a "football" guy," said Grigson. "That was comforting to me and it set the wheels in motion right away. I knew immediately, this is where I wanted to be. From the onset this was a fit for me. I just felt it. Just as you have instincts in all areas of life, evaluation and football. Right away, I knew in my gut that it felt right."
As a college talent evaluator with Philadelphia, Grigson is responsible for the draft selections of running back LeSean McCoy (2009), wide receivers Jeremy Maclin (2009), DeSean Jackson (2008) and Jason Avant (2006), tight end Brent Celek (2007) and defensive tackle Trevor Laws (2008). Both Jackson (two) and McCoy (one) have been selected to the Pro Bowl. McCoy was the second leading rusher in the NFC this season (1,309) while setting Eagles' franchise records for overall touchdowns (20) and rushing touchdowns (17).
Serving as the Eagles director of player personnel for the last two seasons, Grigson was instrumental in the signing of 2011 free agents, cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha, defensive end Jason Babin, running back Ronnie Brown, defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins, wide receiver Steve Smith and quarterback Vince Young. He also helped orchestrate a trade which sent quarterback Kevin Kolb to the Arizona Cardinals for cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and a second round selection in the 2012 NFL Draft. The free agent class along with Rodgers-Cromartie combined to start 56 games while Babin ranked third in the NFL with 18.0 sacks and earned his second career Pro Bowl nod.
During Grigson's 12 years in the NFL, he has been part of teams that have made the playoffs on eight occasions, including three trips to the Super Bowl.
A native of Highland, Indiana, Grigson played collegiate football at Purdue University and captained the Boilermakers during the 1994 season.
"It's a tremendous opportunity and a once in a lifetime blessing (to return to Indiana)," said Grigson. "I was born in this state, raised in this this state, went to college in this state and met my wife in this state. I spent most of my life in this state and learned to play football in this state. That says a lot about how near and dear Indiana is to me on all levels. That's comforting knowing that I'm going to be embarking on this opportunity and challenge with that as a backdrop."
Grigson was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals in the sixth round of the 1995 NFL Draft, but spent the '95 and '96 seasons with the Detroit Lions after being released by the Bengals following training camp. He spent time with the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League in 1997 prior to retiring. Grigson was a pro scout for the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the CFL in 1998 as well as an assistant coach for McPherson College that same year. He made a stop with the Buffalo Destroyers (AFL) as the team's player personnel coordinator/assistant coach before starting with the St. Louis Rams.