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ESPN's Dan Orlovsky Was Asked If He Will Join Jeff Saturday's Colts Staff

Peyton Manning and Dan Orlovsky

After the Indianapolis Colts stunned just about everyone around the league by hiring former center and current ESPN NFL analyst Jeff Saturday to replace the fired Frank Reich as interim head coach, it's been a running joke about which television personality could be next to join the Colts' staff.

Sports talk host Dan Patrick asked fellow ESPN NFL analyst Dan Orlovsky that question in jest Tuesday on the "Dan Patrick Show."

Orlovsky gave him a serious answer that clearly came as a surprise.

Orlovsky, who spent one of his 12 NFL seasons playing for the Colts, said that, while he has not been contacted by Saturday directly about coaching for the Colts, the door does not appear to be totally shut, and he's interested in getting into coaching.

"Jeff and I have had conversations about coaching," Orlovsky said. "We’ve had some really good, in-depth conversations about what coaching looks like, who are the good ones, who are the bad ones, my interest level in it with where I am in the present moment. ... I texted with him yesterday, ‘hey man, good luck, go crush it,’ that type of thing, and we decided to touch base later. So no, he has not directly offered me anything, no.”

Patrick expressed surprise with Orlovsky's answer, admitting he asked the question as a joke. But Orlovsky said that, while he won't lobby Saturday for a job, he also wouldn't turn one down if it were offered.

"I’ve made myself pretty clear to Jeff," he said. "I want to coach one day, I’m very much so interested in it. Candidly, as the days go on and on, I get more and more interested in it. You miss that part of football."

Orlovsky has no coaching experience since he announced his retirement from football in 2017. But that may not necessarily be a deal-breaker for the Colts, as Saturday had never coached in college football or the NFL prior to being named interim coach. On Tuesday, he promoted 30-year-old Parks Frazier to be the offensive play-caller.

Orlovsky noted that he has several friends from his playing days who are in coaching around the NFL, so his first shot might not have to come from Saturday.

That might be the best thing for his coaching career, if it ever materializes. 

Orlovsky spent the bulk of his interview with Patrick talking about the challenges Saturday will face taking over the 3-5 Colts in the middle of the season. He noted that the locker room will know that Saturday only got the job because of his relationship with owner Jim Irsay and that it appears obvious Irsay is trying to lose games to improve the Colts' placement in this spring's NFL Draft.

Patrick did get Orlovsky to joke with him at the end of the interview when he asked  how the entire crew from ESPN's "NFL Live" — him, Mina Kimes, Booger McFarland and Marcus Spears — would fare on the Colts' coaching staff.

"We wouldn’t have the number one pick then," Orlovsky said with a laugh. "We would do too well.”