"Jim Irsay broke his silence Monday. For the first time since he went into rehab after his arrest for driving under the influence, he talked to reporters.
"It happened at the NFL owners meeting in Atlanta. The Colts owner wanted to talk about the pitch for Super Bowl 52, not his arrest.
"It happened in a packed hallway at the NFL owners meeting hotel.
"If you want to talk about the Super Bowl bid for the Colts, I'm here to answer that, I'm not going to say anything beyond that,' Irsay said.
"Irsay answered questions, but not the ones on everyone's minds.
"'It's not avoiding the elephant in the room, really. It's going forward with the business at hand,' he said.
"Willing to explain why Indianapolis deserved another chance to host a Super Bowl, Irsay said, 'My feeling is from the heart. My feeling is we did such an incredible feeling the first time.'
"He was unwilling to say much at all about his arrest and rehab.
"Irsay did say he's spoken to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, but wouldn't say what they've talked about.
"He also wouldn't speculate about how his troubles with the law and controlled substances might affect Indianapolis' bid for Super Bowl 52.
"'You know, I know in terms of trying to intertwine issues like that is your job. But again I'm not really addressing those issues,' he said.
Irsay said he is grateful for the support he has been receiving and he is excited about being back, per WTHR.com
"It's something where I haven't been in a coma or anything like that. I've been clued in to everything that's been going on the last few months. It's good to be at this meeting and really kind of focus on the Super Bowl bid.
"I'm really not gonna talk about anything personal, medical issues or that sort of thing. But I'm just grateful to be back and certainly have a lot of appreciation for the support that I've received.
"I'm just kind of all in. It's good to see Jeff Saturday in the meeting. It feels good to be back and I'm excited about it,' he said.
Irsay was arrested on March 17 for driving under the influence. The Colts owner subsequently entered rehab looking frail but looked better in front of reporters on Tuesday, according to ESPN's Mike Wells.
"Irsay was arrested March 17 for allegedly operating a vehicle while intoxicated. He faces four felony counts of possession of a controlled substance. He had $29,000 in cash and bottles of prescription drugs in his vehicle when he was arrested.
"Irsay's body looked fragile prior to entering rehab. He looked stronger Monday and at times got caught up in the emotion of being back around the team while addressing the media."
Unfortunately for Irsay, Minneapolis beat out Indianapolis and New Orleans for the right to host Super Bowl LII in 2018, per Rochelle Olson of The Minneapolis Star Tribune:
"Minneapolis' theme, 'Built for the Bold,' emphasized the new $1 billion Vikings stadium under construction and the state's friendly ethos.
"When NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announced the victor after the 32 NFL team owners' fourth ballot, raucous cheers and shots of 'We did it!' from Minnesota reverberated in the hallways of the Ritz-Carlton in Atlanta's upscale Buckhead neighborhood, where the high-stakes drama played out."
According to Wells, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has yet to discipline Irsay for his March arrest because he is taking his time "to understand the facts" before deciding on the matter.
13 WTHR Indianapolis