Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator Bruce Arians will not coach on Sunday afternoon in the team's Wild Card game against the Baltimore Ravens. According to a report from Kim Jones of NFL Network, the coach has come down with an illness and is in the hospital. Clyde Christensen, the team's quarterbacks coach, will step in and call the game for the Colts on offense.
The team did not disclose what the specific illness is, but they did say he was at the hospital and "doing fine." Last Thursday, Arians missed practice with what the team called the flu. An illness has been circulating around the Colts complex.
Arians guided Andrew Luck and the Colts offense to a successful 11-5 season, while also filling in for Chuck Pagano as interim head coach during Pagano's treatment for leukemia. The loss is obviously a huge blow for Luck and an offense that is going against a charged-up Ravens defense in the final home game for Ray Lewis. Stampede Blue weighs the absence of Arians:
Losing Arians is akin to losing Luck or Wayne for a game. He is THAT vital. Obviously, team has rallied before, but this is a big blow.— Brad Wells (BBS) (@StampedeBlue) January 6, 2013
The impressive interim work, along with the offensive production, had made Arians a head-coaching candidate for several teams during the current round of interviewing in the NFL.