Colts Coach Chuck Pagano Battling Leukemia

Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano announced today that he has been diagnosed with leukemia.

The Indy Star reports that Pagano was diagnosed with acute promyelocytic leukemia. He will undergo four to six months of treatment including chemotherapy in hopes of curing the disease.

The Colts medical team said that Coach Pagano has a “highly treatable” form of the disease, and owner Jim Irsay said that he was confident that Pagano would “beat this thing.”

Irsay said:

“I am optimistic. I feel with every fiber in my body, and I know Chuck feels the same way, that he can beat this thing.”

Dr. Larry Cripe of IU Health Simon Cancer Center will be treating Pagano. Cripe said:

“The goal is to cure the disease. A cure is usually defined when the cancer is in remission for three to five years. The process is long and complicated and we’re just starting right now.”

For the moment, Pagano will step down from his position as head coach of the Indianapolis Colts. Offensive coordinator Bruce Arians has been named as the interim coach.

Arians said:

“We have to move on from today. We are going to get ready for the Packers on Sunday. This football team will survive.”

CNN reports that Pagano has been feeling fatigue for the last several weeks. The coach noticed some bruises on his body, and his wife urged him to see a doctor.

This is Coach Chuck Pagano’s first year with the Indianapolis Colts. He was previously the defensive coordinator for the Baltimore Ravens.