New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton is one of the most respected offensive coaches in the NFL, to the point that some defensive coordinators may even feel a little bit intimidated going up against him.
This week, the honor goes to Chuck Pagano. The Chicago Bears defensive coordinator has to gameplan for Sunday’s playoff matchup against the Saints, and he admits that it’s no easy task. In fact, Pagano made a funny remark about how he wishes Payton could do something to make life a little bit easier for Pagano and his colleagues.
“I don’t know how many hobbies Coach Payton has. I wish he had more and spent a little less time trying to ruin the lives of defensive coordinators and defensive assistants and players,” Pagano said, via Dan Wiederer of the Chicago Tribune.
Unfortunately for Pagano, it’s probably too late for Payton to pick something new up this week. Pagano’s mood will probably be even worse if it turns out the Saints are closer to full strength than it looked like they might be.
Former Indianapolis Colts coach Chuck Pagano joined the organization in the same year it drafted quarterback Andrew Luck first overall, so it’s fair to say the pair’s fates intertwined quite a bit during their NFL careers.
With Luck’s retirement, Pagano, now defensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears, stopped to pay tribute to his longtime quarterback in a statement. In it, Pagano said Luck’s decision took “great courage,” and the ex-coach would “forever be a huge Andrew Luck fan.”
Luck and Pagano were quite successful together, at least initially. They made the playoffs three times in their first three years together, which culminated in an AFC Championship appearance in 2014. Things went downhill after that, and Pagano was fired after the conclusion of the 2017 season, a year Luck missed due to injury.
It’s pretty safe to say that Pagano does not share Colts’ fans’ reaction to Luck’s retirement. Perhaps the fans will come around to his point of view.
Chuck Pagano has said he wants to coach in the NFL again in 2019, and he should have multiple opportunities to do so even if it is not in a head coaching role.
Pagano is drawing interest from multiple teams as a potential defensive coordinator. Numerous reports have linked him to at least four teams — the Arizona Cardinals, Cleveland Browns, Carolina Panthers and New York Jets.
Pro Football Talk reported that Pagano interviewed with the Panthers on Thursday.
Of all those opportunities, it would be a surprise if Pagano did not land a job somewhere. The 58-year-old took a year off last season after coaching the Colts from 2012-2017, and he was the defensive coordinator of the Baltimore Ravens for a season prior to that. Pagano’s overall record with Indy was 53-43, and he took the Colts to the playoffs three times and reached the AFC Championship Game in 2014. All indications are that he is still highly respected among NFL circles, and he even had a head coaching interview recently.
When all is said and done, Pagano may have his pick of multiple offers.
The Denver Broncos seem intent on hiring a defensive-minded coach as a replacement for Vance Joseph, and they have added another former defensive coordinator to the list of possible candidates for their head coaching vacancy.
Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports that the Broncos are scheduled to host former Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano for an interview on Wednesday and possibly Thursday.
Pagano took a year off last season after coaching the Colts from 2012-2017. He was the defensive coordinator of the Baltimore Ravens for a season prior to that. Pagano’s overall record with Indy was 53-43, and he took the Colts to the playoffs three times and reached the AFC Championship Game in 2014.
Pagano, who is 57, said before the 2018 season that he wants to coach again, but it seems unlikely that he’ll wind up with the Broncos given the report we recently heard about them narrowing down their search.
Chuck Pagano was fired by the Indianapolis Colts following back-to-back disappointing seasons, but he is not ready to close the book on his NFL coaching career.
In an appearance on NFL Network’s “Good Morning Football” on Wednesday, Pagano said he “absolutely” wants to continue coaching in the NFL in some capacity.
Pagano’s stint with the Colts was his first as a head coach, and it got off to a promising start when the team went 11-5 and reached the playoffs in each of his first three seasons. However, the former defensive coordinator’s inability to build a serviceable defense coupled with Andrew Luck’s injuries led to some rough play over the past two years.
It seemed like Pagano might be getting his old job back after the Colts fired him, but nothing ever came of that. He may have to take a season off, but Pagano will almost certainly find an assistant coaching job somewhere if he wants it.
Chuck Pagano was seemingly on the hot seat for many seasons before the Indianapolis Colts decided to move on from him, and he believes he would have been gone sooner if not for Andrew Luck.
Pagano was a guest on FS1’s “First Things First” Monday morning, and he had nothing but positive things to say about Luck. The former Colts coach said he believes Luck will be back to his old self in 2018, and he credited the QB with extending his coaching career in Indy.
“Everyone saw the picture of him on a bicycle from the Indy 500. He’s strapped, he’s ripped,” Pagano said, as transcribed by Matthew VanTryon of the Indy Star. “My wife, my three daughters, my granddaughter, they all thought he looked great. He’s in a great place mentally, he’s in a great place physically. I expect Andrew to be the old Andrew, to come back and play great football this season and beyond.
“Obviously he’s got a lot of work to do. He’s got to get back on the grass, he’s got to start throwing the football. He’s in a great place. I love Andrew Luck. He got me more years than I probably deserved. He’s a phenom.”
Until Luck is throwing actual NFL-sized footballs again, Colts fans are going to worry about his status. After all, team owner Jim Irsay insisted a year ago that Luck would be ready for Week 1, and he ended up not playing a single snap the entire 2017 season.
“Him not being able to play killed him. When you can’t be there for your teammates and you’re recovering and rehabbing, it kills you. Last year, it killed him,” Pagano said. “The great competitors want to be out there. This cat, he’s dying to get back on the football field. He understands, ‘OK, I’ve got to do A, B, C and D to get get myself back and make sure I’m ready.’ It’s the mental part, the physical part, he’s got to build chemistry with all the new guys on that team, he’s got to start throwing the football and he’s going to have to start taking some licks sometime.”
The Colts went 11-5 and made the playoffs in each of Pagano’s first three years with the team, but they were 20-28 over his final three seasons. Luck’s health issues had plenty to do with that, but it’s admirable of Pagano to say Luck was the reason he kept his job as long as he did. Based on what the Colts have said recently about Luck, they should have their starting quarterback on the field at some point this offseason.
Now that Chuck Pagano has been fired by the Indianapolis Colts, there have been rumblings that he could get his old job back with the Baltimore Ravens. Based on some of the things he has said about his coaching staff, all signs indicate John Harbaugh is open to that.
On Thursday, Harbaugh told reporters that he is only considering coaches with experience in his system as Baltimore’s next defensive coordinator. That would indicate that either linebacker coach Don Martindale is in line for a promotion or Pagano is coming back.
Pagano spent one season as the defensive coordinator for the Ravens in 2011. He was the team’s secondary coach for three seasons prior to that. Dean Pees, who had been Baltimore’s defensive coordinator since 2012, has retired. There’s still a great deal of mutual respect between Pagano and Harbaugh, and it would not be a surprise if Pagano returns to the team.
Chuck Pagano may be out of a head coaching job in the NFL, but that does not mean he won’t have options.
The Baltimore Ravens reportedly are trying to lure him back as defensive coordinator, according to The Baltimore Sun’s Jeff Zrebiec and Mike Preston.
Preston says the Ravens are also interested in Vic Fangio.
The Ravens are in the market for a new defensive coordinator after Dean Pees retired.
Pagano served as the team’s defensive backs coach from 2008-2010 before becoming defensive coordinator in 2011. He then took the Colts head coaching job the following year.
Although Baltimore failed to make the playoffs this season, they were sixth in the league in points allowed per game and would be attractive to a defensive coach thanks to their talent.
The Indianapolis Colts have not waited until Monday to make the most predictable firing of the offseason.
As originally reported by WISH-TV’s Anthony Calhoun and ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Colts confirmed that they have fired coach Chuck Pagano after six seasons.
The firing will come as no surprise to anyone, including Pagano himself, who must have seen the writing on the wall. The decision was reported as a formality on Saturday.
Pagano has been dodging rumors of his demise for a good two years, but with a new general manager in place and a 4-12 season in the books, he couldn’t keep the job any longer. He went 52-44 overall in Indianapolis, delivering two AFC South titles and going 3-3 in the playoffs. The Colts haven’t made the playoffs in three years, though, and are badly in need of an overhaul.
Chuck Pagano is expected to be fired by the Indianapolis Colts after Sunday’s game.
Both ESPN’s Adam Schefter and NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport say that the Colts are expected to part ways with Pagano.
Pagano, 57, went 11-5 in each of his first three seasons with the Colts. The team then slipped to consecutive 8-8 seasons. The Colts enter Sunday’s game against the Houston Texans 3-12 on the season.
Pagano has been on the hot seat for over a year. The Colts have a new GM who is expected to be able to hire the team’s next head coach.