June 20, 2016 - Aaron Wilson
Colts to induct Bill Polian into Ring of Honor
The Indianapolis Colts will induct Pro Football Hall of Famer and former President/Vice Chairman Bill Polian into the team’s Ring of Honor during halftime of the Colts Week 17 game against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, January 1, 2017. Polian spent 14 of his 32 NFL seasons with the Colts from 1998-2011. During his time in Indianapolis the team won eight division championships, two conference championships and reached the Super Bowl twice. The franchise also won its fourth world championship with a victory against the Chicago Bears in Super Bowl XLI. Polian was named The Sporting News Executive of the Year on six occasions, including two with the Colts (1999 and 2009). He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on August 8, 2015. “Bill was incredibly successful during his time with our franchise and proved to be a Hall of Famer,” said Colts Owner & CEO Jim Irsay. “He was one of the most innovative personalities to ever grace our sport, and his passion for the game was and still is unmatched. I will always be grateful to Bill for his contributions to the Colts, and to the NFL.” During Polian’s tenure, Indianapolis advanced to the postseason 11 times during a 12-year span and posted 10 or more wins in each of those playoff years. From 2000-09, the Colts produced 115 regular season wins, the most in a decade by any NFL club. Under his direction, the Colts posted a 143-81 (.638) regular season record, which ranked as the second-best mark in the NFL during that span. The team won eight division titles with Polian at the helm. Polian’s expertise was prevalent in the NFL Draft as he was responsible for picks such as Peyton Manning (1998), Edgerrin James (1999), Reggie Wayne (2001), Dwight Freeney (2002), Dallas Clark (2003), Robert Mathis (2003), Bob Sanders (2004), Joseph Addai (2006), Pierre Garcon (2008), Pat McAfee (2009) and Anthony Castonzo (2011). Polian also found key free agents in Jeff Saturday, Mike Vanderjagt, Gary Brackett and Adam Vinatieri. In 24 seasons as a general manager or president with Indianapolis (1998-2010), Carolina (1995-97) and Buffalo (1985-1992), Polian’s teams made 17 playoff appearances, eight championship games and five Super Bowl appearances. In Buffalo, he led the Bills to three consecutive Super Bowl appearances from 1990-92. Polian becomes the 13th member inducted to the Indianapolis Colts Ring of Honor and joins Robert Irsay (1996), Bill Brooks (1998), Ted Marchibroda (2000), Chris Hinton (2001), Jim Harbaugh (2005), Colts Nation (2007), Tony Dungy (2010), Marvin Harrison (2011), Edgerrin James (2012), Eric Dickerson (2013), Marshall Faulk (2013) and Jeff Saturday (2015). Follow me on Twitter: @AaronWilson_NFL Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.