Chuck Pagano: Presence at Colts Game Should Lift Young Team

Chris TrapassoAnalyst INovember 4, 2012

Oct 7, 2012; Indianapolis, IN, USA; A banner for Indianapolis Colts coach Chuck Pagano, who has been diagnosed with leukemia, is on display during cancer awareness week before the Green Bay Packers play the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-US PRESSWIRE
Brian Spurlock-US PRESSWIRE

When leukemia forced Chuck Pagano to leave his head-coaching post with the Indianapolis Colts, it could have been devastating for an organization amid a complete overhaul loaded with youthful and inexperienced players in key positions. 

But what have they done this season?

Through seven games, they've doubled their 2011 win total and find themselves in the thick of the AFC playoff race. 

The team has adopted the term "ChuckStrong" and have incorporated it on warm-up shirts and as a hashtag on Twitter. 

It's been wildly popular and many of the Colts' opponents have supported the movement created for Pagano during his recovery. 

As if Pagano's predicament wasn't inspirational enough, the Colts got a major lift this afternoon before their AFC clash with the 4-3 Miami Dolphins, as evidenced by this ProFootballWeekly tweet.

For a team with a rookie quarterback, two rookie tight ends, a rookie receiver and many newly acquired players, seeing their head coach, in all likelihood, provided a great deal of motivation for Indianapolis. 

ESPN's SportsCenter tweeted that Pagano would be in attendance to watch the home game against Miami. 

Any club would be inspired by the presence of their coach, but for a team with a totally new regime and many new faces, Pagano being in the building should deliver a much-needed lift for a team that already has shown drastic improvement in 2012.