As expected, the Colts have cast a wide net in their efforts to replace Frank Reich as the team’s full-time coach. However, while Indianapolis has brought in candidates with plenty of coaching experience, it appears that interim head coach Jeff Saturday is still in the running for the job.
Saturday is reportedly among the Colts’ coaching candidates to receive a second interview. He joins a list with defensive-minded coaches Dan Quinn, Raheem Morris and Ejiro Evero.
Among that group, Saturday has the least amount of NFL coaching experience. He has just eight games, and a 1-7 record, under his belt; Quinn and Morris have both been NFL head coaches and have extensive resumes as coordinators and assistant head coaches while Evero has coached in the NFL all but one season since 2007.
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Still, CBS Sports’ Josina Anderson reports that Colts owner Jim Irsay “desires to hire” Saturday. Other members of the organization are not on board with that potential decision.
In Indy, I’m told Jim Irsay still has desires to hire Jeff Saturday, but some who work w/ the owner or have his ear, while feeling Saturday is a great person—are not in favor of him as a HC, per source. We’ll see if the #Colts make it through the list of expected 2nd interviews.
— JosinaAnderson (@JosinaAnderson) January 25, 2023
Of course, Anderson notes that Irsay will have “the final say” on the matter, and that’s part of why Saturday remains in the mix.
However, Colts fans are hoping to change that by taking matters into their own hands.
A group of Colts supporters has started a petition on Change.org entitled “Don’t hire Jeff Saturday as head coach.” The petition was created by Shawn Ward and has already garnered over 1,000 signatures.
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Ward kept the explanation of his reason for starting the petition short and sweet.
We as Colts fans will always love the memories of the SB XLI team but we don’t want Jeff Saturday as head coach of this team!
Hire someone with experience and save your fan base from revolting.
It’s not a surprise that Colts fans are doing this. A majority of the team’s supporters seem to dislike the idea of hiring Saturday.
In fact, Nate Atkins of the Indianapolis Star tweeted a poll about the possibility of hiring Saturday earlier this week. A whopping 74.2 percent of the 2,386 responders voted that they would “hate it.”
How would you feel if the Colts hired Jeff Saturday as head coach?
— Nate Atkins (@NateAtkins_) January 24, 2023
Saturday was the only one of the candidates among Atkins’ polls to earn the “hate it” distinction. So, it’s clear that Indianapolis supporters want a different person in charge of their team.
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Now, the only question is whether Irsay will listen to them. He seems steadfast in his belief that Saturday is the right man for the Colts, and he has a strong relationship with the 12-year Colts center. He even took a victory lap after Saturday earned an upset win over the Raiders in his first game after surprisingly earning the Indianapolis interim coaching gig.
But if there is enough fan protest and backlash, perhaps Irsay may be willing to change his mind.