Colts head coach Tony Dungy moved on to phase two of his life on Monday, calling it quits after a Hall of Fame NFL coaching career. After a 31-year NFL career, Dungy has decided it was time to move on and get set for the second part of his life, one that will involve doing what he enjoys most – ministering to others. “We just felt this was the right time,” Dungy said. “Don’t shed any tears for me. I got to live a dream most people don’t get to live.”
The 53-year-old Dungy told team owner Jim Irsay of the decision to retire on Sunday, and then talked to his staff and some of his players and told them that he would no longer be their coach. Instead, he will give way to Jim Caldwell, another man that will come right in and make a seamless transition from NFL assistant head coach of the Colts to being the head man on the sideline.
“I think I’ve got a responsibility to be home a little bit more, be available to my family a little bit more and do some things to help make our country better,” Dungy said. “I don’t know what that is right now, but we’ll see.” Dungy set league records for most consecutive playoff seasons (10) and consecutive 12-win seasons (six), and leaves with the highest average of regular-season victories of any coach in league history (10.7).
“I knew this day would come some time, it always does in life,” Irsay said, tearing up. “It’s been an incredible journey, and as an owner, I think, you dream of having the kind of relationship with a head coach that I’ve had with Tony.” Dungy finished his six-year tenure in Tampa and his seven-year stint in Indy as the career leader in victories for both franchises, finishing with an overall record of 148-79.