LeGarrette Blount #29 of the New England Patriots runs for a touch down against the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium on October 18, 2015 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Throughout most of the NFL playoffs, it was assumed the New England Patriots’ top two assistants would leave to helm franchises of their own. Defensive coordinator Matt Patricia was linked to the Detroit Lions head coaching vacancy for weeks, which eventually came to fruition. Meanwhile, many assumed offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels would head to Indianapolis, where the Colts, and franchise quarterback Andrew Luck, awaited him.

For about eight hours, that was true, too. The Colts officially announced McDaniels as the new head coach of the Colts Tuesday afternoon, but by the time everyone went to bed that night, McDaniels had reversed course, as ProFootballTalk first reported he might do. He will stay with the Patriots, while the Colts are back at square one weeks after most other coaching vacancies were already filled.

Colts general manager Chris Ballard held a brisk, 20-minute press conference Wednesday morning to address the situation. As he walked off the stage, he had one pointed remark to make about the Patriots.

“The rivalry is back on,” Ballard said.

Ballard was referring to the decade-long power struggle in the AFC between the Colts and Patriots when Peyton Manning and Tom Brady were both at the height of their powers. Brady’s Patriots came out on top more often than not while Manning was in Indy, but the series produced plenty of memorable moments.

The rivalry arguably continued into Andrew Luck’s tenure with the Colts, as the two met in the playoffs in 2013 and 2014. The Patriots won both games in blowout fashion, with the 2014 AFC title game kicking off the infamous DeflateGate scandal. The Colts have not made the playoffs since that game, while the Patriots have won two Super Bowls and lost another.

In the press conference, Ballard stressed that the Colts will simply go back to the list of candidates they had prior to “landing” McDaniels. One of the top names is Dave Toub, the Kansas City Chiefs special teams coordinator who has consistently fielded top kick and punt return units throughout his NFL career.

Offensive Coordinator Josh McDaniels of the New England Patriots celebrates after winning the AFC Championship Game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Gillette Stadium on January 21, 2018 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The biggest question the Colts' next coach will face is how healthy is Andrew Luck. Once thought of as the next great NFL quarterback, Luck has had trouble finding the field in recent years due to a nagging shoulder injury. Whether McDaniels backed out because of this uncertainty or a promise that he would eventually succeed Bill Belichick in New England, or a combination of both, is unknown.

Ballard understandably did not seem thrilled at the position the Colts found themselves in during the press conference but stressed that they would be fine in the long term. According to Ballard, what is most important is finding someone who really wants to be the coach of the Colts.

“We will get the right leader for the Indianapolis Colts,” Ballard said. “One that believes what we believe and wants to go where we want to go.”