In January, the Indianapolis Colts totally wiped out their previously accomplished organization. Now, with a roster lined with rookies, a new general manager and a head coach dealing with leukemia, they're in the thick of the AFC playoff race.
So much for the two- or three-year rebuilding process that traditionally yields a variety of disappointment, growing pains and, most importantly, losses.
Right now, we all should be rooting for this Colts team.
Pagano got his first head coaching gig, then was diagnosed with the serious illness and was forced to leave the team. His departure spurned the now famed "ChuckStrong" hashtag on Twitter and inspired the youthful bunch to wins over the Green Bay Packers at home and thrillers over the Tennessee Titans and Miami Dolphins.
According to ESPN's Chris Mortensen, Pagano could be returning to the sidelines soon:
Pagano starts 3rd & final chemo on Fri. Doctor says he's still in complete remission. Text he's BLESSED! #Chuckstrong— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) November 25, 2012
Interim coach and offensive coordinator Bruce Arians has done a tremendous job filling in and holding the team together after such a jolting development. But the Colts will get a major boost when Pagano is healthy enough to assume his head coaching duties.
Battling for a win on Sunday is one thing, but Pagano has been fighting for his life, and his cancer is now reportedly in remission.
Cancer has affected many of us, so, if for no other reason, that's precisely why all should be rooting for Indianapolis this season.
It's really that simple.