Nice Guys Don’t Always Finish Last

Faith and simplicity are two terms that best describe Indianapolis Colts head coach Tony Dungy’s key to success and his life as a family man.

Growing up around notable coaches helped to create a solid foundation of strong values for Dungy – values that indeed reflect on the way he coaches and treats his players.

“I was fortunate enough to work for coach [Chuck] Noll, whose family was very important to him. I saw that you could win Super Bowls and still place your family at a high priority,” said Dungy earlier in the week.

He instills his positive characteristic traits into his players. Despite the public reactions, Dungy stood firm by his decisions to allow his men to spend extra time with their families before rushing down to the media intensity in Miami.

“I wanted them to have an extra day on Saturday and Sunday to be with their family and make up for some of those 13 weeks they weren’t able to be. That was as important to me as [anything else],” said Dungy. “I know we can still get the job done and we can do things in the five days that we have down here. To have that Sunday with their families was more important to me, frankly, than having the team come down here and meet the media.”

Aside from making sure his players get in some adequate family time, according to Dungy, his other motto – that he learned from coach Noll – is “when you struggle, do less,” which coincides with his strategy of keeping it simple.

“Well our offense is not that difficult. We don’t do a lot, we don’t go in motion, we don’t do a lot with different formations; we just play basic football,” said Dungy. “I think what you have to do is do what you do best and that’s what we expect from the Bears. They are not going to change very much. Obviously, the more pressure you put on any quarterback, the better off you’re going to be.”

Dungy learns from experience as well. According to Dungy, the Colts played a couple games without one of their top men, defensive back Bob Sanders and without their top four safeties and were still able to execute the game well.

“[We] played better because we played smarter, we played faster and we played with energy. That’s what our defense is all about and we believe that we have to be able to do that no matter who is in the lineup. We just concentrated on doing what we do and not getting too exotic,” said Dungy.

After over 20 years of coaching, Dungy said he and the Colts are proud to represent themselves, their city and their establishment in playing in the biggest game of football ever.

“To me this is great. It’s a great setting. This is where you want to be in this profession, getting to the Super Bowl is what we are all in this business for and you strive to get here. But I think that you have to know that, in the final analysis, in the long run it is not meaningful. That is what drives me, my Christian faith, and understanding that as great as this is, we can’t look at this as the end-all be-all,” said Dungy.

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