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Former Bills QB Frank Reich named Colts' head coach

Former Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator and former Buffalo Bills quarterback Frank Reich has agreed to become the Indianapolis Colts' head coach, the team announced.

Reich's hire ends a whirlwind coaching search for the Colts after New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels withdrew from an announced agreement become the team's head coach on Tuesday.

Reich, 56, emerged as the favorite for the job after meeting with Colts general manager Chris Ballard on Friday. The Colts reportedly also interviewed New Orleans Saints assistant head coach/tight ends Dan Campbell and Bills defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier.

The Bills play the Colts in Indianapolis next season after the Colts came to Orchard Park in 2017 for the snow game.

Reich will be formally introduced on Tuesday.

“We are excited to have Frank Reich as our new head coach,” Colts general manager Chris Ballard said. “Frank is a leader of men who will demand excellence from our players on and off the field. I look forward to working with Frank to deliver a championship-caliber team to the city of Indianapolis.”

Reich's candidacy was enhanced by quarterback Nick Foles leading the Eagles to victory over the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LII.

Reich, who has more than a quarter-century of NFL experience as a player and coach, was hired by Eagles coach Doug Pederson in 2016 to run his offense. He helped Carson Wentz establish himself as one of the league's premier rookies in 2016 and helped the quarterback develop into a legitimate MVP candidate before he suffered a torn ACL and LCL in December.

Reich also served as the San Diego Chargers' offensive coordinator for two seasons after initially being hired as the team's quarterbacks coach in 2013. He worked as the Arizona Cardinals' wide receivers coach in 2012.

His coaching career began with the Colts in 2006 when he was hired as an intern before being promoted to offensive assistant and later quarterbacks coach. Peyton Manning passed for more than 9,200 combined yards over the 2009 and 2010 seasons. Reich worked as the Colts' wide receivers coach in 2011 after Manning missed the season because of injury.

Frank Reich gets sixth chance for first Super Bowl ring

Reich has the challenge of coaching quarterback Andrew Luck, who missed the entire 2017 season due to a nagging shoulder injury, back to his form before the injury.

“Frank has all the ingredients of a successful head coach: intelligence, innovation, character, organizational and leadership skills, and a commanding presence," Colts  owner and CEO Jim Irsay said. "He also has a stellar reputation, and his myriad of life experiences and the people he has worked with make him the perfect fit for us and our fans. I feel extremely fortunate and could not be more excited for Colts Nation and the future of our franchise."

The other challenge for Reich will involve his coaching staff. Multiple assistant coaches signed contracts thinking they would work under McDaniels. Former Cowboys linebackers coach Matt Eberflus, who will be the defensive coordinator, is among those under contract.

As far as Philadelphia is concerned, the Eagles must now replace Reich and a quarterbacks coach after John DeFilippo became the Minnesota Vikings' offensive coordinator last week.

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