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Has Josh McDaniels talked to the assistants he “hired” in Indy?

When it comes to the spurning of the Colts by Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, it’s hard to feel bad for the team that proclaimed to the world that a deal was done before a deal was actually done. It’s hard not to feel bad, however, for the assistant coaches who were hired by McDaniels, as a practical matter, to work with McDaniels in Indy.

Those men have been caught in the gears of a nonsensical rule that allows winking and nodding as to the head coach, but that results in contracts being signed — and lives potentially being turned upside down — by the assistants.

One of the issues that emerged in the wake of McDaniels treating the Colts like a bad batch of McDonald’s is whether McDaniels has spoken to the people most affected by Josh changing his mind. And one media outlet has both sides of the story covered.

Dianna Russini of ESPN reported shortly before 10:00 p.m. ET that “several members” of McDaniels’ shoulda-woulda-coulda staff in Indianapolis had not yet heard from him. Josina Anderson of ESPN reported that McDaniels has “spoken to every one” of the coaches with whom he would have worked in Indy, and that he spoke to them “a while ago, shortly after [talking to] Indy.”

Whatever the truth may be, ESPN is covered either way. Which is another reason for ESPN’s editors and producers to perhaps consider some sort of procedure for ensuring harmony in tweeting among the small army of reporters who cover the NFL. While it’s somewhat surprising that this doesn’t happen more often, the best approach would be for it to happen never.