Chris Ballard’s last words: “The rivalry is back on”

Colts General Manager Chris Ballard was measured in his words throughout his Monday morning press conference as he attempted to pick up the pieces after Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels rejected the Colts’ head coaching job. And then at the very end, Ballard had something to say.

Ballard thanked reporters and then said, “The rivalry is back on” before walking away from the podium.

Obviously referring to the longtime Patriots-Colts rivalry that was the hottest in the NFL for many years of Peyton Manning and Tom Brady’s primes, Ballard was indicating that the Colts are aiming to knock the Patriots off from the top perch in the AFC.

As for why McDaniels is staying in New England, Ballard said he doesn’t particularly care.

“I didn’t want the explanation. Either you’re in or you’re out,” Ballard said. “That’s his prerogative and that’s his choice. He chose not to be an Indianapolis Colt.”

And now Ballard will try to build a team that can beat McDaniels and the Patriots.