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Grigson named Sporting News executive of the year

Grigson Reuters

In many ways, the Sporting News brand has seen its influence diminish dramatically in recent years.  In one specific way, the Sporting News retains a significant amount of sway in NFL circles.

The Sporting News awards annually the one postseason award not among the Associated Press collection of honors that is regarded as the unofficially official NFL designation:  Executive of the year.  This year, the winner is first-year Colts G.M. Ryan Grigson.

“It’s truly an honor to be recognized for this award and I’m thankful to all of my peers who considered me for this accolade,” Grigson said in a statement released by the team.  “Our success this season encompassed the entire organization, including the unwavering support from Mr. Irsay, the dedication of the entire scouting department, the leadership of the coaching staff and the gutsy performance of our players week in and week out.  I also owe a big debt of gratitude to my wife, Cynthia, and my five children who sacrificed so much in my first year as general manager.  This was a very special season and the courage shown by Chuck and this team will be etched in me and the entire Colts family for a lifetime.  This year was a stepping stone en route to our ultimate goal — hoisting the Lombardi Trophy together.  We’re going to continue to work tirelessly until we reach that objective. ”

The executive of the year is determined by a vote of coaches and executives.

Grigson presided over a stunning reversal for the Colts, who went from 2-14 to 11-5 and a wild-card berth.  Blending rookies and veterans and role players, the Colts became a team in the truest sense of the term, responding admirably to the adversity arising from coach Chuck Pagano’s leukemia diagnosis, and finding a way on multiple occasions to win games in which they trailed in the second half.

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22 Responses to “Grigson named Sporting News executive of the year”
  1. popolover says: Jan 28, 2013 7:34 PM

    That must be burning Polian butt right now. Glad for you Ryan! Although Bill going to take credit somewhere along the way!

  2. whatevnfl says: Jan 28, 2013 7:36 PM

    Awesome, great personnel evaluator and great person, well deserved.

  3. tonyugoh says: Jan 28, 2013 7:40 PM

    Well deserved, nobody did a better job patching together a roster like he did, whether it was his draft steals like TY Hilton, Vick Ballard and Dwayne Allen, or free agent pickups like Jerrell Freeman, Cory Redding and Donnie Avery. He’s also shown to be the complete anti-Polian in his openness with the local media and willingness to approach more modern methods towards building a team. Definitely has the future looking bright in Indy.

    Also say what you want about Jim Irsay, but the Colts are consistently among the model franchises in the NFL and the Grigson hire further proves it.

  4. CKL says: Jan 28, 2013 7:44 PM

    I think it’s safe to say that this exec did a way better job with what he had to deal with than his predecessor ever did. Congrats to Grigson.

  5. cliffordc05 says: Jan 28, 2013 7:54 PM

    Grigson did a fantastic job but I must admit that I was hope John Schneider of the Seahawks would receive some recognition. He has completely rebuilt the roster in three years and had a phenomenal 2012 draft.

  6. jbcv101 says: Jan 28, 2013 7:55 PM

    Congratulations to Ryan Grigson. This award went to the most worthy man this season, considering how many changes had been made in the coaching staff and how many players from 2011 had left the Colts roster going into 2012, as well as the amount of new players coming to this team in 2012. Grigson is a big reason why the Colts exceeded close to, honestly 100% of the football minds out there (you know who you are) !!!!!

  7. peytonsneck18 says: Jan 28, 2013 8:16 PM

    congrats!!! my Colts are on their way back to the top again, only a one year drought, not many teams can say that, huh redskins?

  8. specialagentjohnnyutah says: Jan 28, 2013 8:32 PM

    No problem with the choice, however John Schneider should get a nod as well. Colts did get a no-brainer franchise qb by virtue of the #1 pick, Hawks got a qb on par with Luck in the 3rd when nearly everyone thought they were insane for picking him, good value. Rest of their draft was stellar as well.

  9. Panda Claus says: Jan 28, 2013 8:38 PM

    Listen, no disrespect to Grigson, but the improvement made by the Colts this year was somewhat of an illusion.

    They fully deserved this year’s 11-5 record, but given the steep odds they faced by not having Manning last year, that 2-14 record they limped home with was clearly abnormal.

    And then let’s not totally disregard the potential of an Andrew Luck-driven tank job last season to get the number one overall.

    Not that Grigson won’t be a fine GM, but following a 2-14 Colts team without Manning is sort of like following a team formerly coached by Rich Kotite. Better things are going to happen the next season.

  10. truthserum4u says: Jan 28, 2013 8:53 PM

    Congrats to Grigson! This was a tough catagory with so many guys doing well. (The days of teams doing absolutely stupid moves are fewer and farther between)

    Speilman also deserves huge kudos as the Vikings made a similiar jump with a much harder schedule. Many people predicted them to be in th bottom three teams again while the Colts were expected to be better, just not this much.

    Improving Gms & improving QBs are only going to make this game that much better!!

  11. lanjoith says: Jan 28, 2013 9:21 PM

    Chargers new GM, Tom Telesco, was Grigson’s right-hand man in Indy. That bodes well for San Diego.

  12. 1historian says: Jan 28, 2013 9:55 PM

    I take 2nd place to no man (or woman) in my dislike of the colts, but this guy did a spectacular job and he is really deserving of the honor.

  13. wannstache says: Jan 28, 2013 10:22 PM

    Attention Stephen Ross: This is what a quality GM can accomplish, and in one year no less. Yours, on the other hand, is in year 6 of his 3-year plan.

  14. hawkforlife says: Jan 28, 2013 10:32 PM

    John Schneider would be my choice but I admit to being a fan. Everyone laughed and pointed fingers but you can’t argue with results.

    Bruce Irvin, most sacks by a rookie, R Wilson should be offensive rookie of the year (robbed as MVP of pro bowl) and a steal in the 3rd round, Wagner a candidate for defensive rookie of the year, Sherman, Browner and on and on. Tough division and a few plays from the Super Bowl. 2nd youngest team in the NFL.

  15. sneakerhead11 says: Jan 28, 2013 11:49 PM

    No disrespect to Gigson, the Colts had a great year but how does John Elway not get the award? Everyone knows he brought in Peyton but look at the other players that made an impact. Dan Koppen, Brooking, Jim Leonard, Stokely, and Tridon Holliday. All players made a huge contribution to the 13 and 3 season.

  16. mrlaloosh says: Jan 29, 2013 12:09 AM

    Well deserved

  17. hooterdawg says: Jan 29, 2013 12:31 AM

    Not sure if Grigson deserves the honor without mentioning Bruce Arians for saving his bacon. How can he credit an almost non existent Pagano for the Colts success in 2012? Sure, kudos to Pagano for fighting the brave fight on the personal front, but, cummon – the Executive of the Year ignores mentioning Arians? It’s easy to see why Arians left.

  18. chikiboy says: Jan 29, 2013 4:47 AM

    Grigson did a good job but the Luck pick was a given.

    Schneider took a QB that no one wanted with the 75th pick, who then went out and arguably outperformed all rookie QB’s and looks to be the best Draft Day value in years.

    He took Bobby Wagner and it was considered a reach. Wagner is in the running for Defensive ROY.

    Bruce Irvin was a factor in a few games and led all rookies in sacks.

    Robert Turbin was a great backup to Marshawn Lynch, and both Jeremy Lane and Greg Scruggs played important snaps as late round picks.

    With all due respect, I really don’t see how it’s even a question.

    Just ask Mel Kiper who recently changed his Draft Day grade for the Seahawks from a C- to an A.

  19. It's always funny in Philadelphia says: Jan 29, 2013 10:18 AM

    Excellent job

  20. jayvee3 says: Jan 29, 2013 2:04 PM

    Grigson took over a team that went 2-14 and turned over nearly 70% of the roster and had over 30 million dollars in dead cap space he could not use. They went 11-5 the following year. You can make a case for Elway, Schneider, and Grigson, but Grigson turned it around in one offseason, while Elway did it in two and Schneider did it in three. It is an award for the best individual season as an executive, not collection of seasons.

    How were the Seahawks a few plays from the Super Bowl? They were a few plays from the NFC Championship, but that would have been a whole new road game.

  21. warhawk137 says: Jan 29, 2013 2:38 PM

    sneakerhead11 says: Jan 28, 2013 11:49 PM

    No disrespect to Gigson, the Colts had a great year but how does John Elway not get the award? Everyone knows he brought in Peyton but look at the other players that made an impact. Dan Koppen, Brooking, Jim Leonard, Stokely, and Tridon Holliday. All players made a huge contribution to the 13 and 3 season.

    ————————————–

    Point of note, only one other GM decided to put in a waiver claim on Holliday, and that was Grigson – the Broncos ended up with him because they had a higher WW priority at that point. So any points Elway gets for that, you kinda have to give Grigson as well. Grigson’s draft picks had much more impact even discounting Luck (since Elway didn’t have a first rounder) – of the Broncos picks, Wolfe has been fine and Hillman and Trevathan at least contributed, but that’s about it. The Colts got a pair of TEs who combined for 70+ catches, 800+ yards, and 5 TDs, a WR who caught 50 balls for 861 yards and 7 TDs, and a RB who started carrying the load 6 games into the season and ended up with 814 yards.

    And even draft aside, I counter the above by pointing out Donnie Avery (who everyone thought was physically done), Jerrell Freeman (CFL player from a D3 school), Cory Redding, Vontae Davis, Samson Satele, and a few other guys, all while managing a transition from a 4-3 to a 3-4 defense with 37 million in dead money (one source I found had the Broncos as only having a bit over 5 million in dead money as of November), not to mention choosing to re-sign Reggie Wayne when everyone thought he was 1) old and 2) going somewhere else.

  22. warhawk137 says: Jan 29, 2013 2:42 PM

    Oh, forgot to mention, as to the folks saying Schneider would have won, I disagree, but I think the argument for him is solid. I’m a Colts fan, but Schneider is the one guy who, if he’d won it over Grigson, I probably wouldn’t have complained about it.

    OK, I wouldn’t have complained MUCH. :P

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