INDIANAPOLIS — For those of you Indianapolis Colts fans wanting a quick update, the relationship between new general manager Chris Ballard and head coach Chuck Pagano is developing just fine.
Colts team Owner Jim Irsay on Sunday night tweeted a two-part message to the team's fans, first about the budding partnership between Ballard and Pagano, as well as a few words on quarterback Andrew Luck's recovery from shoulder surgery:
The Colts announced the hiring of Ballard, who replaced Ryan Grigson, on Jan. 29, and from the start, both Ballard and Pagano discussed their eagerness to work with each other in the coming months to put together the best roster possible heading into the 2017 season.
Ballard, who had spent the previous few seasons helping build the Kansas City Chiefs into a formidable foe — particularly on defense — as the team's director of football operations, said in his initial press release that he is looking forward "to working with Chuck and his staff, the personnel staff, and all the outstanding Colts employees."
The feeling was mutual for Pagano, who also said in the release that, "I am extremely excited about Chris coming on as our general manager. He brings a wealth of knowledge and a ton of experience to the organization. I'm looking forward to rolling up our sleeves and going to work with him."
Over the past three weeks, both Ballard and Pagano have been tasked with getting to know each other very well so that they can figure out what makes each other tick the best when it comes to their respective jobs. Ballard and his personnel staff are tasked with going out and finding the best fits for the Colts as far as potential free agents and/or draft picks; Pagano and his staff must take those players and ensure they perform on the field.
But oftentimes the GM-head coach relationship reaches far beyond that simple dynamic; sometimes a coach might have a suggestion as far as a player they might want on their roster, while the general manager might chime in on how a certain player already on the roster is being utilized.
One player both Ballard and Pagano can already agree upon as being the team's primary pillar is Luck, who, of course, signed the most lucrative deal in NFL history last offseason.
Irsay confirmed Jan. 19 that Luck was "recovering from successful outpatient surgery to fix (a) right shoulder injury that had lingered since 2015," but "will be ready for (the) season."
Luck this past week tweeted a couple videos from his Andrew Luck Book Club account showing off the sling on his right arm, but he appears to be doing just fine, as Irsay said:
It still remains to be seen how — or if — Luck's surgery will affect his participation in the team's offseason program, which begins April 17.
Colts fans can probably expect to get a more in-depth Luck update later this month, when a team representative — maybe Ballard and/or Pagano — speaks to the media at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis.
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