The Colts said all week they wouldn’t try to “play for” coach Chuck Pagano, who is battling leukemia in a nearby hospital. They didn’t want their emotions to overwhelm them. Yet following a stirring, 30-27 win over the Packers that Pagano no doubt cheered from his hospital bed, they could admit the obvious.
They wanted to win for him like crazy. Shoot, WR Reggie Wayne even fantasized earlier in the week about having a great game, then having the game ball delivered to Pagano. Well, that’s exactly what happened.
In the end, in the bowels of Lucas Oil Stadium, there was owner Jim Irsay clutching the football, surrounded by security, racing to the hospital to award it to Pagano. It was a dramatic end to an emotion-filled week. And it all happened thanks to the resilient Colts, the ageless Wayne, and mature rookie QB Andrew Luck.