The Washington Times-Herald

Indianapolis Colts

December 26, 2012

Chuck's back



The Colts usually give the players a day off following a late-season win. But every one on the team's roster was in attendance of this week's Monday morning team meeting.

"We had a team meeting and was blessed to have everybody show up on a 'Victory Monday.' God bless' em. I'm ready to go. As [Indianapolis-based cancer specialist Dr. Larry Cripe] told me. He said, 'Be prudent. And be smart with how you attack this thing.' I've still got a stick regimen to stick to," Pagano said.

"There's a plan for a couple of years. And then for a couple of years after that. This thing [the Colts' season] is rolling pretty good. So, again, if I don't just get in the way. I feel great. My weight's back. My energy's back. It's just a blessing to be back here.  Our time and energy has got to into moving forward and getting ready for the ball game on Sunday."

The first-year head coach was introduced by team owner Jim Irsay. General manager Ryan Grigson, who is also in his first season with the Colts, stood on the stage with Pagano and Irsay. Pagano's immediate family sat in the first row of the audience.

"We couldn't be more excited [about Pagano's return]," Irsay said. "Chuck is ready for this challenge. The time is right for him to grab the reins and lead us on the [playoff] journey. It's a miraculous story. It's storybook. It's real. I just couldn't be happier. The key thing is that Chuck is healthy."

Perhaps the most emotional moment of Pagano's remarks came when the coach directed comments to his wife.

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