For Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano, that’s the message for his team heading into its final game of the season on Sunday against the Houston Texans at Lucas Oil Stadium.
The first 16 weeks of the season have undoubtedly been rough for the Colts, who enter Sunday’s game with a 3-12 record and have seen key player after key player go down with injuries, the latest of which being top cornerback Rashaan Melvin, who was placed on Injured Reserve on Wednesday with a hand injury suffered more than a month ago against the Tennessee Titans.
Despite it all, however, the Colts have found a way to stick together. While rumors and reports of in-fighting and bickering run rampant for a few other teams that have fallen out of contention down the stretch, Pagano’s squad, with all of its moving pieces, has kept working.
“I credit the coaches. I credit these players. I credit the leaders in there for continuing to come to work every single day and be great pros,” Pagano said. “The ball has not bounced our way. The record is what the record is. We’ve had our opportunities. We haven’t been able to close out games and finish games.
“But great character,” he continued. “Just resilient guys. Tough guys that love to compete and they love to play.”
A tough season does have a couple potential opportunities for bright spots if the Colts are able to defeat the Texans (4-11) on Sunday: not only will it help give the franchise a little momentum heading into a critical offseason, but, by virtue of Indy’s 20-14 victory in Houston on Nov. 5, the Colts would finish the season in third (and not last) place in the AFC South.