Sunday’s game for the Indianapolis Colts against the Buffalo Bills at Lucas Oil Stadium was emotional for the players, coaches, fans and cheerleaders with recovering head coach Chuck Pagano watching from the stands.
Pagano is still a ways away from making his return to the sideline, but he has been a presence while attending the last two home games for the Colts.
A few minutes into the fourth quarter, Colts owner Jim Irsay walked out of the owner’s box with the ailing head coach so that everyone in attendance on Sunday could receive him and show the support that has been unbelievable in Indianapolis.
In an effort to continue the support for Pagano and the fight against cancer, Colts cheerleaders Megan M. and Crystal Ann joined the exclusive club with over 30 of the players by shaving their heads during the second half.
The two cheerleaders helped raise $22,000 for leukemia research and showed their support by letting the Colts mascot shave their heads.
Although support for an ailing coach or player is nothing new these days in the NFL, the Colts’ efforts to help Pagano battle the deadly disease has been unprecedented and truly inspirational with seemingly everyone in the organization and in the city of Indianapolis getting involved.
Pagano has been so much of an inspiration to the players that it has been apparent on the football field every single week. The Colts are currently sporting a 7-4 record heading into Week 13 and appear to be on their way to clinching a playoff berth in the AFC is the hot streak continues.
Rookie quarterback Andrew Luck has been advertised by exceeding expectations of a number one overall pick. Luck has done the best job possible in terms of stepping out of the shadow of Peyton Manning by shattering records and winning seven of the first 11 games of the season.