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Colts hire an analytics guy


Football: Closeup portrait of Indianapolis Colts general manager Ryan Grigson posing during photo shoot in the Practice Facility Theater at Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center. Indianapolis, IN 3/6/2015 CREDIT: AJ Mast (Photo by AJ Mast /Sports Illustrated/Getty Images) (Set Number: X159331 TK1 )

AJ Mast

With the four low-rent years of Andrew Luck’s career squandered in Indianapolis and the Colts now faced with seeing their franchise quarterback consume a much larger chunk of the franchise’s salary cap, it becomes critical to make the most out of all draft picks and free-agent moves.

They can start by, you know, not trading a first-rounder for guys like Trent Richardson.

To assist in the process of getting the most out of the players who won’t be making $25 million or so per year, the Colts have announced that John Park has been hired for football research/analytics. “Park will incorporate and utilize statistical resources to provide support in various efforts such as player evaluations, salary cap, coaching, strength and conditioning and medical,” the team said in the press release announcing the move.

Park’s NFL experience is limited. He spent the last four months as an intern in the NFL Player Engagement department. Before that, he spent time with the Browns as a remote independent contractor, working as a game charter.

He graduated from Columbia after spending four years in the music industry, obtaining a degree in cultural anthropology. Park then worked as an actuary, consulting with Alvarez & Marshal’s and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Park has no title attached to his role, such as director or V.P. or anything like that. As a result, it’s unclear how much sway he’ll have with G.M. Ryan Grigson when the time comes to make decisions.

Regardless, the fact that the team would announce the move so prominently shows that the Colts realize that they need to embrace this new approach to evaluating and developing players in some way, because they now need to not squander a single draft pick or low-level free agent signing, because the best draft pick they’ve made since Peyton Manning will soon be getting paid a lot more money than Manning ever made.