Back when head coach Chuck Pagano was diagnosed with leukemia, it was assumed he would be out for the season and the Colts would implode. One of the first decisions interim head coach Bruce Arians made was to motivate his team to do one thing: extend the season into the postseason so Pagano could return this year to the sidelines.
With a 20-13 win over the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday, the Colts clinched one of two available AFC wild card spots. While Pagano is expected back next week, it won’t be the last game he coaches this season for the Colts.
Indianapolis has completed more than just a miraculous turnaround from last season’s horrendous 2-14 campaign. Before Pagno’s diagnosis, the story was can Andrew Luck turn the franchise around, but after Pagano became sick, Luck took on a whole new role and aged considerably as a quarterback and a leader.
From massive comeback wins against the Packers and Titans as well as last minute victories against the Vikings and Lions, the Colts seemed to have more than Luck on their side.
They’re going to enter the playoffs the AFC’s fifth seed and are set for a matchup against either the Bengals or Ravens in the first round. But for now, this is more than a playoff berth for the Colts, this is something much more special than that and the ride is far from being over.