INDIANAPOLIS – Find any quality head coach in the history of the NFL and you will see a high-level quarterback attached to his name.
If you don’t have the answer at quarterback, you are going to struggle massively to create a winner, let alone one capable of doing it on a consistent/sustainable basis.
And that’s what makes the hire of Shane Steichen a necessary attempt by the Colts in accomplishing that.
For several years now, the Colts tried to stop-gap the most important position in sports.
That can’t continue and the presence of Steichen enhances the possibility of providing this new quarterback with a stable environment.
Easily the biggest appeal to hiring an offensive-minded head coach is that specific system will be installed from day one, and maintain continuity throughout the era of that HC.
That’s huge for a rookie quarterback entering the NFL and not having constant turnover with the offensive system he’s playing in.
League wide, the trend for offensive hires speaks for itself:
-Of the final 8 teams in the playoffs each of the last two seasons, 13 of those 16 teams were led by offensive head coaches (Sean McDermott twice, Mike Vrabel once were the only non offensive coaches).
-Of the 8 new head coaches from last year’s hiring cycle, 5 were from offensive backgrounds and 3 from defensive backgrounds. The 5 offensive coaches went a combined 46-38-1, with 4 of the 5 finishing better than .500. The 3 defensive coaches went 18-33, with Lovie Smith getting fired.
And in today’s AFC, it’s never been more apparent what it means to have a young, ascending quarterback.
The conference has never experienced so much quality youth leading playoff teams.
In this year’s postseason, all 7 playoff teams from the AFC were led by quarterbacks age 27 or younger. And that doesn’t even include a Deshaun Watson (Age: 27) with Cleveland, a Mac Jones (Age: 24) with New England or Kenny Pickett (Age: 24) with Pittsburgh.
If you aren’t trying to build with a young quarterback in today’s AFC, you are lightyears away from building a long-term contender.
And, again, that’s why the hiring of Steichen is important for the Colts.
Assuming the Colts make the expected draft choice of a young quarterback come Round 1 this April, Steichen will provide that QB with a stable, modern NFL system and that is the sort pairing many of today’s winners already have in place.
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