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It's alive! ALIVE!

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Slowly but surely, the monster known as the Indianapolis Colts is coming back to life. Since about early November, the monster has periodically frightened opponents, but has not been able to show its true fangs. Players like Jake Scott, a guard by nature, started games at RT. Ramon Guzman, a special teams player and linebacker, played at DE. Aaron Moorehead, garbage collector or grocery bagger by trade, started two games at WR. The Colts starters missed a total of 88 games this season. The constants for the team were Peyton Manning, Reggie Wayne, Jeff Saturday, Gary Brackett, Ed Johnson, Kelvin Hayden, and Marlin Jackson. Even DPOY Bob Sanders missed a game (Week 5 against Tampa Bay).  

Today, for the first time in months, the monster started to feel like its old self again:

...Colts' sixth-year head coach said he received word that when the team resumes practice on Wednesday all players except perhaps tight end Ben Utecht probably will be available.

"That will put us the healthiest we've been in a long while," Dungy said Monday as the AFC South Champion Colts (13-3) prepared to play the AFC West Champion San Diego Chargers (12-5) in an AFC Divisional Playoff game at the RCA Dome on Sunday at 1 p.m.

The Colts, who have had a variety of starters miss more than 90 games this season with injuries, were without eight players in the December 30 regular-season finale against the Tennessee Titans.

They were:

Wide receiver Marvin Harrison (knee), wide receiver Anthony Gonzalez (foot), cornerback Tim Jennings (concussion), defensive back Keiwan Ratliff (hamstring), offensive tackle Ryan Diem (knee), defensive tackle Raheem Brock (rib), Utecht (shoulder) and defensive end Robert Mathis (knee).

Dungy said team trainers told him only Utecht may not be ready by Wednesday.

"Everybody else should be ready to go," Dungy said. "One of the benefits of the bye, I think, is going to pay off for us."

The key addition in that list is Marvin Harrison. It also goes without saying, but I'll say it anyway: The key to any kind of Super Bowl run is Marvin's health. If he is indeed healthy and ready to play like the Marvin of earlier this season, the Colts will win the Super Bowl again. Marvin stretches the field, and there is no CB in this league that can shut him down for four quarters.

It seems like forever since we've seen a full and complete Colts squad. Considering that this patchwork unit managed 13 wins and a 5-1 record in the toughest division in football, it is truly scary to think of how they will play at full strength.

Scary in a good way, that is.

Update [2008-1-9 11:29:51 by BigBlueShoe]: Per usual, King Richard beat me to this injury update two days ago.