Indianapolis Colts could make push for division title with win at Houston

The Indianapolis Colts have exceeded even the wildest of expectations this season.

The departure of Peyton Manning? A rookie quarterback and a young roster overall, working against a salary cap strapped with dead money? The Colts’ task was daunting entering the season.

And then, three weeks in, the team’s new head coach, Chuck Pagano, was diagnosed with leukemia and would miss most of the season while undergoing treatment (Pagano is in remission and could return to the sideline Dec. 30).

Anyone would have understood if this young squad had won just four games, and five or six wins would have been considered good given the circumstances.

But no. These “ChuckStrong” Colts (9-4) remarkably have showed grit and determination late in games, led by their sensational signal-caller, Andrew Luck; they amazingly stand one win away from clinching a playoff spot and control their own destiny for the AFC South title, the first of two crucial matchups with the Houston Texans (11-2) occurring at 1 p.m. today at Reliant Stadium in Houston.

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Indianapolis Colts Enter Great Unknown Against Houston Texans

Reality has set in for the Indianapolis Colts and their fans.

Peyton Manning will not be behind center after starting a total of 227 consecutive games for the franchise.

Sixteen-year veteran Kerry Collins will take the snaps for the Colts for the foreseeable future, starting with today’s season-opening bout against the Houston Texans in Reliant Stadium.

The Great Unknown.

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A Post-Preseason Look at the Indianapolis Colts

So here stand the Indianapolis Colts.

Here they stand after a condensed offseason, an entire training camp without quarterback Peyton Manning, a 1-3 preseason and a cut to the 53-man roster.

So here they stand … and where, exactly is “here” that they stand?

I have to be honest with you, not even I am quite sure one week in advance of the team’s regular-season opener against the Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium. [Read more…]