Colts should have learned from the Bears’ mess with Dave McGinnis

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In 1999, the Bears announced that they had hired Dave McGinnis as their next head coach. One problem: McGinnis hadn’t signed the contract the Bears gave him. And as McGinnis, his wife and his agent sat in a Chicago hotel room looking over the contract, the breaking news that he was the Bears’ next head coach came on the TV. McGinnis was none too pleased that the Bears put out the announcement before he signed, didn’t like the terms of the contract, and walked away.

Other teams should have learned from that, but the Colts didn’t. On Tuesday the Colts announced that Josh McDaniels would be their next head coach, but by Tuesday night McDaniels had informed them he wasn’t taking the job.

McDaniels never signed a contract with the Colts, never put out a public statement saying he would be the next Colts head coach, and repeatedly refused to answer reporters when they asked him if he’d coach the Colts. So why did the Colts put out the announcement?

Maybe the Colts thought a verbal agreement was good enough. Or maybe the Colts knew that (as PFT reported on Sunday) McDaniels was wavering, and they thought putting out a public announcement would make him feel like he had no choice but to follow through. Either way, there’s a lesson to be learned in this.

The lesson is clear: Don’t announce your next head coach without a signed contract.

90 responses to “Colts should have learned from the Bears’ mess with Dave McGinnis

  1. I really can’t think of a franchise more deserving of the mess they have created. Good luck to Jimmy and his crew of morons in their quest for “multiple Lombardi’s” with a damaged QB and a new head coach no other team wanted to hire.

  2. This circles back to the Rooney rule argument and the Raiders. The NFL’s claim was you don’t have and agreement until the paperwork is signed. These are perfect illustrations.

  3. And you guys were pushing so hard that Raiders violated the Rooney Rule because Gruden had an “agreement.”

    I’ve said a few times: “Ask Greg Schiano what the value of an unsigned contract is worth.” Now I can add the Colts to that list too.

  4. Oh come on. Talk about stretching to make an argument.

    Unlike McGinnis, McDaniels apparently had agreed to the terms of the contract. Also apparently he agreed for Colts to make an announcement.

    What the Colts failed to anticipate was Kraft coming in to talk McDaniels out of it, even though he didn’t object during the interviewing process. It may or may not rise to the level of legal interference with agreement, depending on whether a legal verbal agreement existed, but it was certainly underhanded. Of course this is familiar territory for them considering how Kraft acted in hiring Belichick away from the Jets. But one can imagine the Patriots organization would be screaming if this happened to them.

  5. It’s simple. A better organization offered you more money to help coach a contender. The Colts are a flat out joke of an organization. Don’t act like you’d take that coaching job either if there was an option for you.

  6. We all know a verbal contract is not worth the paper it’s printed on. Sam Goldwyn said that first. And he was not talking about football.

  7. I am not as disparaging of the Colts as I am about McDaniels. He is the turd here, not the Colts. Allowing assistants to be hired when you weren’t going to take the job anyway is a crappy move and lacks integrity. I will say again – Colts are lucky he is staying in NE.

  8. I get it. Don’t say he’s coming until he signs, but he verbally agreed and thenhired coaches and was on the phone with Indy the night before and never said anything to them about not coming. Ive t this in other comments. At what point can you count on someones integrity?

  9. Or maybe he was wavering and said he needed a couple more days to think about it and the Colts simply didn’t want to give him the time so they forced the issue; “He agreed to terms so he’s our next coach. Now, make your decision, Josh. We don’t have time for you to play around with us.” If you can’t trust a man’s word, that’s not your fault. After agreeing to terms and hiring coaches, the lack of integrity is McDaniels.

  10. tavisteelersfan says:
    February 7, 2018 at 9:00 am
    Even crazier example … Belicek and the Jets

    2 0 Rate This

    ————————

    Well, as we’ve learned the Jets are pure scum and cheaters. As are the Colts. They’ve started all of this with their systematic cheating approaches that go on behind the scenes.

    Pats fans have known it for years and years.

  11. He has to be the next head coach of the Pats, probably after next year. Why else would he act like this? Burning this bridge the way he did means that 31 teams won’t hire the guy. Wonder how happy Brady is today? Not sure their relationship is solid. Lots of drama in NE.

  12. For a long while now the Colts have seemed to be a very poorly run organization, and this just bolsters that idea. Although it’s doubtful that Josh McDaniels would have been a good HC for them.

  13. None of us REALLY know what went on there….

    Probably a mess on both sides. I think McDaniels gave verbal…then started getting squirrely….and “it aint a deal until they sign on the bottom line”

    Colts probably knew something might have been up and threw out press release to put pressure on him…didnt work.

    Dont worry everyone – all the millionaires and billionaires will be fine.

  14. The Bears are the biggest dumpster fire in the league and indyBear is in here yapping his pathetic mouth? Hilarious. I’m from northwest Indiana and unfortunately in the dumpster fire Bears local market so I know from experience having to watch their disaster of a product they put out on the field on a yearly basis. This poor tool is still upset about the Superbowl 10 years ago awwwwww so sad

  15. Pretty obvious Josh couldn’t handle a head coach position where you have to rebuild a team… without Tom on one side of him and BB on the other Josh really is nobody special.

  16. i saw the headline started with “Colts should have learned” and then had to read the story to see which thing this was referring to.

  17. terripet says “Then he should of not hired assistant coaches”

    —-
    Maybe McDaniels discussed with the Colts who it was he’d like to hire, once (and if) he accepted, and the Colts went and hired them as part of their effort to make him feel like he had no choice but to go there.

    It’s not hard to believe that the Colts can be both that incompetent and that sleazy. Look at their owner.

  18. Why would anyone want to coach a team that was part of a sting operation involving Goodell and the Ravens to frame Brady for something that according to Aaron Rodgers, every QB does, and the NFL never seemed to care until their sting operation of the Patriots?

  19. This is easy. Allow deals to be signed by anyone after the close of the regular season, and no announcement of a deal and nobody gets to start at the new job until after the super bowl.

  20. One of movie mogul Sam Goldwyn’s (the G in MGM) famous quotes —

    “A verbal contract isn’t worth the paper it’s written on.”

  21. @
    azbearsfan35 says:
    February 7, 2018 at 9:09 am

    I wonder what ever happened to Dave McGinnis?
    ______________________________________________________________________________________
    He was an assistant with Mularkey on the Titans, then went to the booth when Wycheck got a headache as color commentator for Titans radio. Seems like a good guy with a solid understanding of football.

  22. As for the Colts, if Josh was worth waiting for it was worth waiting to announce his hiring until the contract was signed. The hiring of assistants before the HC job is secured is quizzical. There’s no NE tampering, as there was no contract in place. And so much for the McDaniels/Brady, Belichick/Brady and Kraft/Belichick tension theories (Wickersham.)

    A name not yet floated: Bruce Arians – immediately available if he did not retire while still under contract for 2018.

    Is the NFL ever going to release the 2016 football pressure measurements study?

    The Butler episode illustrates team-first philosophy and Belichick is unyielding on stuff to which 95% of HCs would give 10 seconds of thought before saying the man may play.

    Even in the wake of losing a SB, NE takes all the oxygen out of the room. It’s great!

  23. From what I heard McD was cleaning out his office and had a change of heart. He along with BB and Mr. Kraft had an emotional impromptu meeting that lead to Josh staying put in NE.

    From how I understand it, this was very unexpected.

  24. And McGinnis was never heard from again. Maybe he should have taken the Bears offer anyway. Just sayin.

  25. Love how everyone is blaming the Colts and nothing is being thrown on McDaniels. Don’t interview if you’re not gonna do it. Plain and simple. He essentially pulled a Belichick with the Jets – definitely a great example of that coaching tree. Deceit and arrogance and the Patriots wonder why everyone hates them…

  26. getyourownname says: “What the Colts failed to anticipate was Kraft coming in to talk McDaniels out of it, even though he didn’t object during the interviewing process. It may or may not rise to the level of legal interference with agreement, depending on whether a legal verbal agreement existed, but it was certainly underhanded.”
    ———————-

    Sorry to interrupt your rant, but McDaniels was still an employee of Kraft so unless McDaniels handed in his letter of resignation, Kraft has every right as the employer to discuss a new compensation plan to keep a valuable asset.

  27. Ken Davis says:
    February 7, 2018 at 9:12 am

    “….. Wonder how happy Brady is today? Not sure their relationship is solid. Lots of drama in NE.”
    ———————————————
    Brady is overjoyed. After all, his business partner has been prosecuted by the Feds for fraud, now, his coach proved himself to be a sleazeball fraud whose integrity is zero. Fits in perfectly, you know, “Birds of a feather flock together.”

  28. Teams do this all the time. This is one of the rare instances where it didn’t work out. This isn’t the norm, it’s the exception.

  29. This is funny though.

    Eagles win the Super Bowl just three days ago and the Patriots still get more media coverage (McDaniels, Malcolm Butler, etc.)

  30. NFL fans should remember that McDaniels got fired for cheating for Denver in 2010 — three seasons after his mentor Belicheat had been busted. Graft certainly remembers, that’s why he threw a ton of cash to keep his “knowledge” in the building this time.

  31. The simple explanation is when you are at sea level and travel to Indy you have different barometric pressures. You then must consider the air temperature differences between Boston and Indy. This is all that happened,Josh was just confused….It’ science ! signed :Patriot fans .

  32. bassplucker says: “And McGinnis was never heard from again. Maybe he should have taken the Bears offer anyway. Just sayin.”
    —————————–

    McGinnis became the head coach of the Arizona Cardinals for 3 1/2 years.

  33. So, what happens with these assistants who were hired to work for McDaniels? Is Josh going to man up and help them find new jobs? He wasn’t legally their coach yet but he let things get WAY too far down the road from a moral standpoint. He screwed over a bunch of people all because he couldn’t make a decision and stick to it.

  34. Lesson #1: Don’t announce your next head coach without a signed contract.

    Lesson #2: Who is Dave McGinnis? (LMAO) Perhaps he should have signed.

  35. Maybe the Colts said it because ESPN said it was going to happen. They aren’t rocket scientists in Indy.

    Let’s not forget this is a non issue if the Colts didn’t try to undermine the tampering with a coach in the playoffs rule by hiring assistant coaches for a guy they couldn’t legally have as a coach. For a team who likes to point out the rules to other people they sure break them a lot so they deserved what they got.

    Signed – someone who lives in Indy and hates the hypocrisy of Colts fans and the organization who constantly cry “cheater” when they don’t get their way while constantly getting got cheating themselves.

  36. I hate when teams who fired their coach poach the assistants and coordinators on successful teams while they are still coaching in the postseason. This only makes matters worse, the league needs to disallow coaches of still playing teams from being in contact with crap teams on their head coaching vacancies.

  37. PugTheDog says:
    February 7, 2018 at 9:48 am
    Love how everyone is blaming the Colts and nothing is being thrown on McDaniels. Don’t interview if you’re not gonna do it….
    ————————————————-

    I personally do not care about the Colts organization, but I can understand any anger that might be felt by assistant coaches hired by the Colts if there was a guarantee that McDaniels would be the next Head Coach, and that was a determining factor in them taking their new job.

    OTOH, your apparent view that you should not interview for a job if you are not going to take the jobs is nuts. Of course any professional can decide during an interview that they do not want the job, no matter how much the interviewer wants to hire him or her.

  38. factschecker says:
    February 7, 2018 at 9:05 am
    The Sheriff is near. Strike up the band.
    ————————————————————————
    I wonder if Irsay extended McDaniels a Laurel and Hardy handshake…

  39. Perhaps the Dolts should have listened to the Donkeys who tried to warn them about McDaniels.

  40. Many here act as if there is only one party at fault in this fiasco. From the outside looking in, it seems one party (prospective employee) wasn’t honest. The other (prospective employer) was obviously incompetent in running their business. If I was forced to choose I suppose I’d rather be considered a liar than a fool, but neither looks good on a resume.

  41. Maybe McDaniels should learn from this, too. Because after turning down the Bears gig, most people are probably left scratching their heads saying “Who?” when they read a story about Dave McGinnis. If McDaniels doesn’t get the Pats gig, we might be saying the same thing about him in 20 years.

  42. beachsidejames says:
    February 7, 2018 at 9:16 am
    Pretty obvious Josh couldn’t handle a head coach position where you have to rebuild a team… without Tom on one side of him and BB on the other Josh really is nobody special.

    ————–

    Or maybe Josh got a good look at the MRI of Andrew Luck’s shoulder and realized Luck will never play another down in the NFL

  43. ikeclanton says:
    “..No one has ever accused the Colts of being smart. This is just another example…”

    Likewise, No one has ever accused the Patriots of having integrity. This is just another example.

  44. He better hope the Pats will hire him when Bill steps down. No other team will touch him now. He already had one shot with the Broncos and it was a disaster. He traded up to draft Teebow in the first round and then was caught cheating Patriot style filming other teams and the Broncos had to pay a fine for it. Now he has shown he has zero personal integrity. It’s Pats or bust for him now.

  45. First this stems from the ridiculous NFL rule of allowing coaches not to negotiate and sign deals before their team’s season ends when the talks go on anyway it just can’s be made official. This time the Colts stepped in it.

    And for all of you disparaging Josh McDaniels, who we love in New England, you’d rather have him than the perennial 8-8 guy you’re presently stuck with.

  46. BS! you can not blame the Colts at all for McDaniels being a punk & backing out. All this is is just another reason to hate the Pats even more. Sooner or later they will be irrelevant again.

  47. Does anyone want to guess who Dave McGinnis’ agent was at the time?

    That’s right, Bob Lamonte…

    History repeats itself!

  48. getyourownname says:
    February 7, 2018 at 8:46 am
    Oh come on. Talk about stretching to make an argument.

    Unlike McGinnis, McDaniels apparently had agreed to the terms of the contract. Also apparently he agreed for Colts to make an announcement.
    ———————————————————————————————————————-
    If you just take some wild guesses but right “apparently” before each one it doesn’t make them true.

  49. bassplucker says:

    And McGinnis was never heard from again.
    ============================================

    He became head coach of the Cardinals.

  50. Instead, the Cardinals signed Dave McGinnis who continued to lose in Arizona. Thanks Bears! I think the Colts will find this to be a blessing in disguise, McDaniels is not HC material.

  51. the Hoodie spoke…. leave and the power of the force stays here…and you go forward with out it….. Stay in NE and win more games than ever before my apprentice.

    The power of the Force………

    Oh yeah… how about a huge dose of karma….. for DEFLATGATE<<<<HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH Stupid horses

  52. Ya don’t you dare announce it if:
    1. Your not the Raiders and can stick it to the NFL repeatedly and get away with it!
    2. Have a great business reputation rather than cheating scandals.
    3. Are dealing with someone who is trustworthy in their word and their character.
    4. All the above apply AND DONT HAVE A SIGNED DEAL STUPID!

  53. Not a Bears fan, but I live near Chicago and that day will live in infamy around here. Mike McCaskey made that announcement, and it was such a colossal, wretched blunder, that Virginia took his toys away, bumped him downstairs, and elevated her other son, the ticket sales executive, to the top rung on the ladder. They have no business owning a sports franchise. Ask their fans what they think of paying exorbitant PSL license fees, to watch a team that hasn’t developed a franchise QB since the 1940’s. It’s crazy.

  54. The guy chose to stay as OC and turned down a lot more guaranteed money and the HC title. With the exception of the assistant coaches he must have blessed, who all got promotions and long term contracts, I don’t have a problem with a guy (that never talked about the job publicly) taking a couple of days to think about it and deciding continuity was more important than power and money. How often are fans on PFT decrying “money” and most are attacking the guy that walked away from it.

    The Colts will be fine. I would hire Frank Reich.

  55. Not exactly how it went down with Dave McGinnis….

    McGinnis was irked about the premature announcement (which came before contract terms were negotiated) but he met them anyway and he DID agree to terms. It had a 2 yer buyout.

    The Bears asked him to conceal the buyout option from the assistants he wanted to hire. McGinnis, already irked, said no and walked away.

    He got the Cardinals coaching job the next season.

  56. Irsay! One of the characteristics of addictive thinking is the urge to get from A to Z without having to deal with all those messy letters in between. Seems like this is a prime example. Sad.

    As for McDaniels: This was probably his last shot at a head-coaching job in the NFL, trust being such an important part of that relationship.

  57. Ballard and Irsay are the laughing stock of the NFL because they assumed they had a verbal agreement and didn’t realize that they needed an actual signature on a contract. I feel for all of the assistant coaches who signed up believing that Josh was locked in. Rather than blaming McDaniels for his change of heart, full wrath should be placed on the naive Colts GM for totally screwing it up. He should actually be fired for his incompetence.

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