Chudzinski took over on Nov. 3 when incumbent OC Pep Hamilton was fired following the team’s 3-5 start.
The Colts finished 8-8 and missed the playoffs, falling well below their expectations after entering the season among a handful of Super Bowl favorites.
Despite rampant speculation to the contrary, head coach Chuck Pagano was retained and agreed to a four-year contract extension with the team, proving the Colts’ commitment to stability.
Keeping Chudzinski also supports that testament, as he had been the team's interim offensive coordinator before Thursday’s announcement.
By making an external hire, the Colts would’ve put Pro Bowl quarterback Andrew Luck in a compromising position by forcing him to acclimate to another offensive system.
As Zak Keefer of the Indianapolis Star noted, it’s been a cyclical position in Indy:
Zak Keefer @zkeefer
Colts have announced Rob Chudzinski will stay as offensive coordinator. That means Andrew Luck will have 3 OCs in first 5 seasons, not 4.1/8/2016, 1:33:37 AM
The Colts were criticized for firing Hamilton in what was believed to be a brash move, given that he helped Indy elevate into the league’s best offense in 2014, one that reached the AFC Championship Game.
While they didn’t regain that high-powered form, the Colts went 5-3 in games Chudzinski was play-calling.
He’ll now have a full offseason and training camp to develop and install his own offense—a luxury he didn't have when he took the reins midseason in a tense time as Pagano’s future remained in question.
Before joining the Colts in 2014, Chudzinski was one of the many victims of the revolving door that the Cleveland Browns head coaching position has become. Chudzinski lasted just one season there, as the team canned him after going 4-12 in 2013.
Chudzinski also served as offensive coordinator for the Carolina Panthers in 2011 and 2012 and helped develop quarterback Cam Newton—the favorite to win this year’s MVP honors—though back then Carolina didn’t possess the lights-out offense it rode to a 15-1 record this year.
The Colts were handicapped when Luck suffered a season-ending rib injury in November. They still finished .500—albeit in a lackluster AFC South—and have the personnel to rebound and contend in 2016.
Perhaps a commitment to stability is all they need.
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