Colts trade Hines, fire Brady as offensive coordinator

Nov. 1—INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Colts' struggling offense claimed two more victims Tuesday.

Eight days after veteran quarterback Matt Ryan lost his starting job, the team relieved offensive coordinator Marcus Brady of his duties.

Hours later, Indianapolis traded versatile running back Nyheim Hines to the Buffalo Bills for draft bust Zack Moss and a conditional sixth-round pick that can become a fifth-rounder.

Hines was spotlighted throughout the offseason as a player who could make a big leap this year. Head coach Frank Reich even went so far as to say he'd draft the 25-year-old if he had a fantasy football team.

Instead, Hines is out after seven games.

He rushed 18 times for 36 yards this year and scored his first touchdown of the season on a 6-yard run during Sunday's 17-16 loss against the Washington Commanders.

Hines also had 25 receptions for 188 yards this season.

Since being drafted in the fourth round out of North Carolina State in 2018, Hines has rushed 300 times for 1,205 yards and 10 touchdowns and caught 235 passes for 1,725 yards and seven scores.

He's also averaged 11.8 yards on 73 punt returns — including 10.1 yards on 11 returns this season — and 20.2 yards on 13 kickoff returns.

Moss has 17 carries for 91 yards and seven catches for 27 yards this season with the Bills. He has not scored a touchdown.

A third-round pick in 2020 out of Utah, the 24-year-old running back has 225 career carries for 917 yards and eight touchdowns and 44 receptions for 319 yards and two scores.

The Brady news was announced in an afternoon release accompanied by a quote from Reich.

"This was an incredibly hard decision, but one I felt needed to be made in the best interest of the team," Reich said. "I appreciate Marcus' commitment to the organization, and he made a significant contribution to our offensive success over the last five seasons. I wish him the best moving forward."

Brady joined the Colts in 2018 as the assistant quarterbacks coach. He was elevated to quarterbacks coach the following season and assumed the offensive coordinator position in 2021 after Nick Sirianni was hired as the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles.

Reich has been Indianapolis' offensive play caller since he was hired in 2018, but the weekly offensive game plan is a collaborative effort with the coaching staff.

Brady's exact duties have never been publicly detailed, but he did extensive work with the quarterbacks during all five of his seasons with the team.

The Colts (3-4-1) enter Week 9 ranked 30th in scoring offense with an average of 16.1 points per game. The defense is seventh in the NFL, surrendering just 19.6 points per outing.

The loss against the Commanders was the second straight defeat in which the defense allowed less than 20 points. Indianapolis did surrender back-to-back scoring drives totaling 21 plays for 171 yards as the Commanders rallied from a nine-point fourth-quarter deficit.

The Colts' primary obstacles on offense have come from turnovers, a faltering running game and pass protection.

Indianapolis has 16 giveaways, the third-highest total in the league, with nine interceptions and seven fumbles. The Colts lost two fumbles against Washington.

A year after All-Pro running back Jonathan Taylor set a franchise record and led the NFL with more than 1,800 rushing yards, the run game ranks 29th with 702 total yards and 3.7 yards per carry.

Indianapolis' quarterbacks also have been sacked 26 times.

Things moved forward in the latter two categories against the Commanders, with new starting quarterback Sam Ehlinger taking just two sacks and the running game producing 135 yards on an average of 4.7 yards per attempt.

Reich will assume the offensive coordinator duties moving forward.

The Colts visit the New England Patriots (4-4) on Sunday.