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Chuckstrong: The Most Inspiring NFL Story of 2012

“Touchdowns and tackles. Those are usually a few things we think about during a typical football season, and while the 2012 season had no shortage of either, we will remember this past season for something extremely different, something that transcends the sport entirely. We will remember a man named Chuck and a few dozen of his friends in Indianapolis.”—Michael Salvatore via Yahoo! Voices Chuck Pagano's back. The Indianapolis Colts head coach returned to the sidelines this week after spending the past few months away from his team battling leukemia. While he was gone, the man still inspired his team to reach new heights. Last year, no one would have thought that the Colts would be in contention for the playoff spot that they are this year. The team finished the 2011 season with a 2-14 record, the worst regular season record by a Colts team since 1991. But in 2012, everything would change. Chuck Pagano became head coach, leading the Colts to early key victories. But in October, Pagano left the team to battle leukemia. The Colts organization did not back down from the challenge though. They launched a campaign of support for Pagano entitled "Chuckstrong," giving fans the opportunity to show their support and raise money for the fight against leukemia. They also garnered a 9-5 record, just one win away from a playoff berth. And now, their seemingly indestructible coach will be back on the field to hopefully lead them into the playoffs. To read more, check out the inspiring story here, or visit the Colts website. (Photo by Keith Allison via Wikimedia Commons.)