The Colts went from 2-14 to 11-5, made the playoffs and found a new star quarterback in Andrew Luck, and watched their head coach battle back from cancer while the interim coach who filled in for him was hospitalized for yesterday’s playoff loss to the Ravens.
That’s more than one can sum up in a tweet.
“It’s been an incredible, incredible year. In 40 years, I haven’t seen one like it. I really haven’t,” Colts owner Jim Irsay said, via Phil Wilson of the Indianapolis Star. “We’ve had the greatness. I felt the Lombardi Trophy in the rain in Florida. So many different things that we’ve done through the years. This year was incredible, tough. It was special and unique in so many different ways.
“I couldn’t have imaged this type of year that it was going to be and the credit to think that we could get this thing reorganized and win 11 games and go through the adversity with injuries and a coach fighting a life and death illness, and then have the coach that was holding it together ending up in the hospital today. What can you say? There’s not much you can say except if adversity builds greatness and strength and those things, then we just added a lot of adversity in our bank.
“I thanked everyone. I’m just thankful to God [head coach] Chuck [Pagano] is standing their healthy and feeling good [after battling leukemia]. What a ride it’s been. Like I said, one of the most special years not only in Colts history but in the history of the NFL, 90-plus years, you just don’t see many years like this. . . . Obviously the future, to say it’s bright is an understatement.”
Irsay went on (and on and on) about the challenges his team faced this year, and made a strong pitch for general manager Ryan Grigson as executive of the year.
Irsay also said they flew offensive coordinator Bruce Arians’ wife in while he was hospitalized in Baltimore, saying “there doesn’t appear to be anything extremely serious, life-threatening.” He said he expected to have Arians flown back to Indianapolis today after further tests.