Colts interim coach Bruce Arians wins Coach of the Year honors
While being entrusted with the crucial job of mentoring rookie quarterback Andrew Luck as the Houston Texans offensive coordinator, Bruce Arians also had to juggle head coaching duties since Chuck Pagano was sidelined by health issues. Bruce Arians took helm of the team during a turbulent period, leading them to a solid 9-3 record with final six games left in the season.
Bruce Arians is the first interim coach who has been honored with the NFL Coach of the Year award. Throughout the course of the season, Bruce Arians emphasized on the responsibility of filling-in for Chuck Pagano, whom he also called his friend. Bruce Arians again played up the loyalty to his friend on Saturday as well.
"I can't stand here and say I was coach of the year. The organization was coach of the year," said Brian Arians. "But more than anything it was Chuck. Cuz, I love you. You set the path. We just drove the bus. We kept the lights on the whole time."
Finishing with a winning record in itself was a great accomplishment by the Indianapolis Colts, who just a season ago had the league worst 2-14 record.
“It was pretty tough when coach Pagano went down but coach Arians stepping in and lifting us up and having us rally behind coach Pagano was very inspirational,” said Andrew Luck. “It was emotional a lot of the time. I’m just proud to be part of the Colts this past season.”
Chuck Pagano, to whose coaching record the Indianapolis Colts’ current season will be officially added, finished second on the Coach of the Year ballot with 5.5 votes to Bruce Arians’ 36 ½. Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll garnered five votes while Minnesota Vikings’ Leslie Frazier ended up with three.
Bruce Arians only spent one season with the Indianapolis Colts and is currently a head coach with the Arizona Cardinals.