Andrew Luck Back For Colts Postseason Push

Intro: Unlike last year, the Colts will have the services of Andrew Luck when they begin their push to the playoffs in December. How important is having Luck’s presence?

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INDIANAPOLIS – This time around, they've got him.

And that should strike an amount of fear into the rest of the AFC South.

Him is Andrew Luck.

When the Colts entered the month of December last season, their playoff fate was up in the air.

Luck was on the sideline.

The Colts began December of 2015 with a 6-5 record, tied with the Houston Texans for the AFC South lead.

For three straight weeks, the Colts watched Matt Hasselbeck's valiant replacement effort lead to the 40-year-old quarterback not being able to finish losses to the Jaguars, Steelers and Texans due to injuries.

The Texans tried to keep the Colts in the divisional race with back-to-back losses in Weeks 13 and 14. But a Week 15 victory by Houston in Indianapolis stuck a dagger into Chuck Pagano's team.

December has arrived again for the Colts.

This time though, they have the best quarterback in the division back, with the AFC South postseason berth anything but decided.

That makes T.Y. Hilton smile.

"Just having your star quarterback back there means a lot," Hilton said earlier this week.

"It makes our job easier. He's a special guy."

Luck's clearance through the concussion protocol this week means that No. 12 will be under center on Monday Night Football.

"You want to have all your guys out there and certainly Andrew is a guy you want to have on the field," Pagano says.

"Everybody is excited about that."

The absence of Luck last year forced the Colts to adapt at the most critical point of the season.

Hasselbeck kept the Colts in it, before injuries led to three more quarterbacks getting playing time last December.

If things go according to plan this year, Luck will be the only one taking significant snaps with the Colts trying to make it through the three-team race separated by just a game.

And the Colts are doing it with Luck putting the pads on.

"Sitting and watching is no fun," Luck said earlier this week. "Playing is fun. Practicing is fun. Winning is fun.

"To have opportunities and to go out and try to win a football game and get a little closer to your goal, that is absolutely special."

Wednesday afternoon practice.

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