By now everyone knows of the inspirational season the Indianapolis Colts had this year. With as many obstacles that laid before them, it is amazing the Colts completed the season with an 11-5 record and a spot in the playoffs. Although the season has ended, the story continues. The Sporting News named Colts general manager Ryan Grigson Executive of the Year for this part he played in the remarkable turnaround.
When Jim Irsay let go both Bill and Chris Polian, it was obvious he wanted change. That is exactly what he got. Upon hiring Grigson and Chuck Pagano, Colts fans could see a new era start to unfold. Early on, it was not certain how the release of so many executive staff, coaches and players would play out. It is safe to say Irsay is very pleased with they way things turned out.
“This was a challenging year in anyone’s book, but Ryan is one of the hardest workers I know, and his dedication paid off. We knew we had someone special when we hired Ryan a year ago, and he is extremely deserving of this honor," Irsay said of Grigson.
Prior to becoming GM of the Colts, Grigson spent nine years in the Philadelphia Eagles front office. He was brought on as the Eagles' regional scout, working his way to becoming the director of college scouting before being named the director of player personnel. Before the Eagles took him in, Grigson began his career in St. Louis as the national combine scout and area scout for the Rams.
“I picked Ryan because I felt that he had a vision, that he had an intelligence, that he had a depth of perception and awareness and that he was capable of taking it up to the next level,” said Irsay.
Without a doubt, Grigson knows football players. That is why he was such a great fit for a team that had released a great deal of its veteran starters. The Colts needed someone who knew which players would be great for their rebuilding team now and in the future.
“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. “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."