INDIANAPOLIS -- Colts owner Jim Irsay, attending his first game following his six-game NFL-mandated suspension, was given one of the game balls after his team shut out the Cincinnati Bengals, 27-0, at Lucas Oil Stadium on Sunday.
Irsay walked out the locker room firmly gripping the ball with his right hand after the Colts recorded their first shutout since the 2008 season.
"We all know how much he loves this game, how much he loves this team," Colts receiver Reggie Wayne said. "For us to win in the fashion that we did in his first game back was big. He got the game ball and hopefully he enjoyed it."
Irsay was suspended by commissioner Roger Goodell after he pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count of driving while intoxicated and acknowledged he was under the influence of the painkillers oxycodone and hydrocodone when he was arrested March 16 near his home in suburban Carmel.
Irsay was not permitted to have any contact with team or media during suspension.
"When you're away from something like that, you grow to appreciate it even more when you're back," Irsay said in an interview last week. "I'm just grateful that I'm physically feeling great and really excited about this season."