Indianapolis, IN (Sports Network) - The Indianapolis Colts have fired head coach Jim Caldwell.
It took new general manager Ryan Grigson about a week to make his first big move. He was hired last Wednesday and decided to make the coaching change in the wake of a 2-14 season that will give the Colts the first overall pick of the 2012 NFL Draft.
Caldwell's three-year run as Colts coach ran full circle. He took over for Tony Dungy to start the 2009 season and led the Colts to a record of 14-2 with a Super Bowl loss to New Orleans. A mark of 10-6 with a first-round playoff loss to the Jets followed in 2010 before the injury to quarterback Peyton Manning led to a dismal 2011 campaign.
The Colts were awful in Manning's absence, losing their first 13 games before winning two in a row. A loss to Jacksonville in the season-finale secured the top overall pick in the upcoming draft and began an offseason housecleaning.
Longtime executive Bill Polian and his general manager son Chris were the first to go. Grigson was then brought in to begin reshaping a franchise that had won eight division titles and suffered through just one losing season between 1999 and 2010.
Caldwell took over in January 2009, one day after Dungy's retirement and went 28-24 during his brief tenure. He had been a member of Dungy's staff for each of the previous eight years, starting in 2001 with Tampa Bay and for the next seven years with the Colts. He served as quarterbacks coach for the first three seasons with Indianapolis before earning the title of assistant head coach before the 2005 campaign.
Prior to joining Dungy in Tampa, Caldwell was the head coach at Wake Forest from 1993-2000, guiding the Demon Deacons to a record of 26-63 with one winning season and one bowl appearance.