- The Washington Times - Wednesday, January 25, 2012

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Colts hired Baltimore Ravens defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano as their coach Wednesday.

The team said Pagano will be introduced at a news conference Thursday. It will be the first head coaching job for Pagano, 51, who has been a career assistant until now with stops in Oakland and Cleveland in the NFL and stints at schools including Miami and North Carolina.

He replaces Jim Caldwell, who was fired after the Colts’ 2-14 season in which quarterback Peyton Manning never played a down as he recovered from neck surgery.

The move is just the latest in a series of changes by owner Jim Irsay.

The Colts fired Caldwell last week after three seasons. The team went to the Super Bowl during Caldwell’s first year, but this year locked up the No. 1 overall draft pick with a horrid performance that also cost team vice chairman Bill Polian and his son, general manager Chris, their jobs.

Irsay has since hired Ryan Grigson, 39, as the GM while letting go of Caldwell’s staff. In all, 11 of the 20 coaches who started the season are gone and others they may go, too, once Pagano arrives.

Raiders finalizing deal with Allen to be coach

ALAMEDA, Calif. — The Oakland Raiders are putting the finishing touces on a deal with Denver defensive coordinator Dennis Allen to make him their coach.

New general manager Reggie McKenzie had his second interview with Allen on Tuesday at the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala., and has told other applicants they were no longer candidates.

Allen, 39, will be the first new Raiders coach to come from the defensive side of the ball since late owner Al Davis hired linebackers coach John Madden before the 1969 season.

Patriots’ Gronkowski listed as unable to practice

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. | New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski was listed as unable to practice Wednesday on the team’s first injury report since he injured his left ankle in the AFC title game against the Baltimore Ravens.

Although the Patriots did not practice, they were required to file an injury report. Gronkowski is listed as “DNP.” Twelve players were listed as “limited participation,” including receiver Wes Welker, guard Logan Mankins and linebacker Rob Ninkovich.

Gronkowski was seen wearing a removable boot on his left foot Monday. The second-year star set an NFL record for tight ends with 17 touchdown catches.

Around the league

STEELERS: Pittsburgh nose tackle Chris Hoke is retiring. Hoke, 35, spent 11 seasons with the Steelers after originally signing with the team as an undrafted rookie free agent out of Brigham Young in 2001. He was a valuable backup during his career. The Steelers went 17-1 in games Hoke started, including a 2-0 mark in 2011.

RAVENS: Baltimore free safety Ed Reed withdrew from the Pro Bowl because of multiple injuries. Reed, 33, is dealing with ailments that include a nerve impingement in his neck, a sore shoulder and a sprained left ankle. He will be replaced by Pittsburgh safety Ryan Clark.

NFL: Now that that labor peace is guaranteed for the next decade, commissioner Roger Goodell has job security through the 2018 season. Goodell, 52, took over for Paul Tagliabue in 2006. His original five-year contract was extended in 2009.

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