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Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay raises the Vince Lombardi trophy during a rally in Indianapolis, Monday, Feb. 5, 2007. The Colts defeated the Chicago Bears to win Super Bowl XLI. (Darron Cummings/AP)
Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay raises the Vince Lombardi trophy during a rally in Indianapolis, Monday, Feb. 5, 2007. The Colts defeated the Chicago Bears to win Super Bowl XLI. (Darron Cummings/AP)

Colts to announce new head coach next week, says team owner Add to ...

The Indianapolis Colts will decide on a replacement for sacked head coach Jim Caldwell by the end of next week, team owner Jim Irsay said on Saturday.

“The #1 pick debate will rage on, what a great year to have it..the HC (head coach) search is wide ranging and thorough, decision by mid to late next week,” Isay posted on his Twitter account.

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Caldwell was fired on Tuesday after his third year in charge of the once-proud franchise ended with a dismal 2-14 record, matching the St. Louis Rams for the worst regular season in 2011.

Overall, Caldwell had a 26-22 record in three seasons as the Colts coach but he was without the services of injured, 11-time Pro Bowl quarterback Peyton Manning for the 2011 campaign.

“This was a difficult decision and it was based on the feeling that this was the direction the franchise needed to go,” Irsay said earlier this week.

“It’s a big change for the franchise but at the same time there’s players, other coaches and many people on the staff that will go forward into the new day and get on with the work of 2012.”

The release of Caldwell was the second key move by the Colts since the end of their season after vice chairman Bill Polian and his son and general manager Chris Polian were fired two weeks ago.

Irsay said the decision to change the head coach and general manager was similar to 1998, when the team went in a different direction by replacing those two positions and drafting Manning.

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