Colts fire head coach Frank Reich

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The Indianapolis Colts have fired head coach Frank Reich.

Reich became the second coach to be fired in-season in 2022 on Monday following a dismal 3-5-1 start. Matt Rhule was the first, dismissed by the Carolina Panthers in October.

Indianapolis suffered a 26-3 defeat at the New England Patriots in what proved to be Reich's final game in charge.

Reich was hired in 2018 after Josh McDaniels went back on his decision to take the job.

While he was not the Colts' first choice, he initially enjoyed great success, leading Indianapolis to a 10-6 record in his first season. After beating the Houston Texans in the Wild Card Round, they lost to the Kansas City Chiefs in the Divisional Round.

Andrew Luck's shock retirement ahead of the 2019 season saw them take a step back and finish 7-9 and, though they got back to the playoffs with Philip Rivers at quarterback in 2020, the Colts' decision-making at the game's most important position following Luck exiting the stage played a crucial role in Reich's downfall.

Reich reunited with Carson Wentz in 2021 after the Colts gave up a first-round pick to land the quarterback he coached as the Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator in 2017, when Wentz was in the MVP race before suffering a season-ending injury and the Eagles went on to win the Super Bowl.

But Wentz has never since reached the same heights and represented a huge gamble by the Colts, one that backfired in Week 18 of last season when he and Indianapolis imploded in a loss to the lowly Jacksonville Jaguars, missing out on a playoff berth as a result.

The Colts subsequently traded Wentz this offseason and landed 2016 MVP Matt Ryan in a trade with the Atlanta Falcons.

However, a seemingly astute move proved a misguided one and Ryan was benched for Sam Ehlinger prior to a Week 8 loss to the Washington Commanders.

The quarterback switch has not yielded the desired results, with the Colts unable to overcome their lack of talent at the skill positions and regression by an offensive line that has received little investment at tackle.

The Colts are 30th in the NFL with an average of 4.77 yards per play, their efforts offering little help to a defense that is seventh by yards per play allowed.

Reich departs with a regular-season record of 40-33-1 and the Colts next face the Las Vegas Raiders, who are 2-6 under the leadership of McDaniels, in Week 10 of a season that looks set to end in a rebuild for the Colts.