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NFL roundup: Pagano expresses pride in Colts' comeback win

The SportsXchange

Indianapolis Colts coach Chuck Pagano, who has been hospitalized with leukemia, wrote an e-mail to the Indianapolis Star to express the pride he has for his team after watching it come back by 18 points to beat the Green Bay Packers 30-27 on Sunday.

Pagano wrote: "I am so proud of this team, staff, organization, fans, community, etc. (I) could go on and on.

"I am the luckiest man in the world. I said it when I got this opportunity several months ago and I am repeating it now. The 12th man came through big time along with the TEAM THAT REFUSED TO LOSE."

Team owner Jim Irsay visited Pagano at IU Simon Cancer Center right after the game to give him the game ball. Pagano celebrated his 52nd birthday Tuesday.

"In my 40 years in this business, I've never been prouder of a team and how they battled back," Irsay told the Star. "I've been in a lot of winning locker rooms, Super Bowl locker rooms, but I've never had an experience like this. People talk about money, what the team is worth, those kinds of things, but this was priceless. Absolutely priceless.

"We walked in, (Pagano) got up, we all embraced and shed some tears and Chuck said, 'You know I don't feel so sick right now.' "

Interim coach Bruce Arians told ESPN Radio Monday morning that he talked to Pagano after the game, saying that he knows what the win "meant to him." He also sent a text to Pagano before the game to let him know that his presence was felt at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Pagano was diagnosed with acute promyelocytic leukemia last week and has been hospitalized since.

--- Green Bay Packers running back Cedric Benson, who injured his foot in Sunday's loss to Indianapolis, will not play in next Sunday's game against Houston, Packers coach Mike McCarthy told reporters Monday.

The Packers signed Benson on Aug. 12 because of their shortage at the running back spot, and he is the team's leading rusher with 248 yards on 71 carries.

Their No. 2 rusher is quarterback Aaron Rodgers, with 108 rushing yards.

Next is Alex Green, who has rushed for 57 yards this season, with 55 of those coming on nine carries against the Colts after Benson was injured.

--Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel will have to pass all the tests in the NFL's protocol for concussions before he'll be allowed back on the field, leaving his prognosis for this week very much up in the air..

Cassel suffered a concussion in the fourth quarter of Sunday's game against the Baltimore Ravens. If he is unable to go this week, Brady Quinn would get the start against the Buccaneers at Tampa Bay.

Quinn, who stepped in Sunday when Cassel got hurt, is going to get the bulk of the practice snaps when the Chiefs return to work Wednesday.

--Houston Texans running back Ben Tate will probably not play Monday night against the New York Jets because of a toe injury, according to ESPN.

Tate practiced on a limited basis last week and Texans coach Gary Kubiak was optimistic that he would be able to play following Saturday's practice. However, Justin Forsett will likely be the one backing up starter Arian Foster if Tate is unable to go.

Tate has rushed for 117 yards on 30 carries with two touchdowns this year. He is coming off a rookie season that included 942 rushing yards with four touchdowns.

--Running back Bernard Scott was placed on season-ending injured reserve by the Cincinnati Bengals after suffering a left knee injury Sunday.

The injury occurred during the first quarter of the Bengals' 17-13 loss to the Miami Dolphins.

--Arizona Cardinals running back Ryan Williams will undergo shoulder surgery this week and miss the remainder of the season.

Williams sustained the injury in Thursday night's loss to the St. Louis Rams. The second-round pick in 2011 also missed his entire rookie season with a torn Achilles' tendon.

With Beanie Wells out, Williams had been getting the bulk of the carries. He had 58 rushes on the season before the injury, but was only averaging 2.8 yards per carry.

--Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu will not play Thursday night against the Tennessee Titans after reaggravating his injured right calf on Sunday.

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin made the announcement a day after the Steelers' 16-14 win over the Philadelphia Eagles.

Polamalu left the game in the second quarter and did not return. He had returned to the lineup after missing two games with the same injury.

--New York Giants defensive back Will Hill has been suspended for four games without pay for violating the league's policy on performance-enhancing substances.

Hill was suspended for using the prescription drug Adderall, and the suspension begins immediately. He will be eligible to return following the Giants' game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Nov. 4.

---New York Giants wide receiver Ramses Barden has been cleared to practice and play after sustaining a concussion more than a week ago.

But running back Andre Brown is not yet recovered from a concussion from Sunday's game against the Cleveland Browns.

--Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III is reportedly doing better a day after leaving Sunday's loss to the Atlanta Falcons with a concussion.

Backup quarterback Kirk Cousins, who replaced Griffin in the third quarter, said Griffin "seems to be doing well" and is "in good spirits," according to ESPN.com.

Cousins said he and Griffin attended a mandatory rookies meeting Monday morning.

Griffin was knocked out of the game on a legal hit to the helmet by Falcons linebacker Sean Weatherspoon while scrambling near the sideline. After being examined by a neurologist in the locker room, Griffin was sent home.

Griffin later tweeted: "I'm ok and I think after all the testing I will play next week."

But he will have to follow the NFL's return-to-play protocol before he is cleared to practice. He also cannot speak to the media until he is deemed symptom-free.

---Washington Redskins coach Mike Shanahan said Monday that injured free safety Brandon Meriweather will need about four more weeks to recover from a knee injury he sustained more than a week ago, according to 106.7 The Fan.

Meriweather was injured before Washington's Sept. 30 game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He collided with teammate Aldrick Robinson during pregame warmups.

---New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham sustained an ankle injury during their 31-24 win over the San Diego Chargers on Sunday night.

After being held to just one catch, Graham was seen in the locker room wearing a walking boot.

When asked about the status of Graham's injury, interim coach Aaron Kromer told the New Orleans Times-Picayune, "We'll see."

The Saints' next game is at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Oct. 21.

---Green Bay Packers nose tackle B.J. Raji is having an MRI taken on his injured ankle Monday, but early reports indicate that no structural damage is expected to be found, according to the NFL Network.

If Raji does miss time, he would likely be replaced by defensive end Ryan Pickett.

--Minnesota Vikings safety Harrison Smith, who was ejected from Sunday's game against the Tennessee Titans for shoving an official, will likely be fined but not suspended, according to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

---Jacksonville Jaguars coach Mike Mularkey said he does not plan to bench quarterback Blaine Gabbert after a poor performance that led to the Jaguars falling to 1-4 with a 41-3 loss to the Chicago Bears on Sunday.

Gabbert had two interceptions returned for a touchdown and lost a fumble.

Mularkey said staying the course is the best approach.

---Free agent running back Kevin Faulk will announce his retirement on Tuesday, the New England Patriots announced.

Faulk, 36, spent his entire 13-year career with New England. He is the Patriots' all-time leader in career all-purpose yards with 12,349 and return yards with 5,041. He was a second-round draft pick of the Patriots in 1999.

Faulk was not re-signed in the offseason.

-- Cleveland Browns cornerback Joe Haden rejoined the team Monday after serving a four-game suspension for violating the league's policy on banned substances.

Haden confirmed that he tested positive for Adderall, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, and he apologized for being suspended.
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