Andrew Luck came into the NFL as one of the most hyped rookie quarterbacks that the league has seen in a long time. He received comparisons to Peyton Manning during his final season at Stanford, which was ironic as the Indianapolis Colts ended up getting the No. 1 overall pick in the draft.
Over the past couple of seasons, Luck has seen that hype turn into criticism. He has seen the media turn against him and begin labeling him as “overrated” in some cases. Some have even gone so far as to say that they don’t view him as a star and that he isn’t even a franchise quarterback at this stage of his career.
Despite those criticisms, Luck is not overrated and is without question one of the NFL’s top signal callers.
Last season with the Colts, Luck ended up completing a career-high 63.5 percent of his pass attempts for 4,240 yards, 31 touchdowns, and 13 interceptions. Turnovers have been an issue for Luck throughout his career, which is a big reason that he has been receiving so much heat. That being said, he did a much better job last season of not forcing the issue and taking what opposing defenses gave him.
QB Andrew Luck ranks 3rd in passing yards & passing TD for a player in their first 5 seasons pic.twitter.com/nJel2G6MWq
— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) May 23, 2017
At just 27-years-old, Luck has also suffered through some injury issues. In the 2015 season, he played just seven games. It was a crushing blow to a Colts team that had made it all the way to the AFC Championship game the year before.
Looking back at last season, the Colts finished the year with an 8-8 record and missed the playoffs once again. Chuck Pagano appeared to be on his way out of town, but Jim Irsay chose to keep him for at least one more season. Indianapolis did fire general manager Ryan Grigson, who had seen the team and fans turn against him after repeated mistakes in free agency and the draft.
Heading into the 2017 NFL season, Luck has been ranked No. 51 on the NFL Top 100 list. Last season, he entered the season as No. 92 on the list. Obviously, someone saw him take a step forward from last season and the previous years.
Last year: 92
This year: 51
— Indianapolis Colts (@Colts) May 23, 2017
Calling someone “overrated” is a very serious claim. Luck has done nothing but take a Colts’ franchise from the No. 1 overall pick to the AFC Championship game in a few years, while putting up monster numbers along the way. Turnovers may be an issue, but many big name quarterbacks have worse turnover struggles.
Luck is without question the face of the Colts’ franchise and a top-10 quarterback. Injuries cannot be counted against a player just because he has bad luck. When Luck is on the field, the Colts are a very dangerous football team.
All of that being said, fans in Indianapolis know just how valuable their quarterback is and have not slowed down their support of him. If anything, seeing the team without him at times over the past couple seasons has made them appreciate Luck even more. Very few quarterbacks are capable of making the impact on their team that Luck has for the Colts.
Not only has Luck received unfair criticism, he has also received that criticism without having a great offensive line. Many of the top quarterbacks in the league have a line that keep them on their feet. Luck has been one of the most pressured quarterbacks in the NFL and to still put up the production he has is impressive.
Your countdown of the highest touchdown rate when under pressure in the PFF Era – starts with Colts QB Andrew Luck. pic.twitter.com/4D3HjYXfXT
— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) May 22, 2017
Expect to see Luck come out strong to start the 2017 season looking to prove his critics wrong. Pagano and the Colts’ coaching staff will put the football in Luck’s hands early and often again this season. Luck will be out to prove a point and the Colts have put together a much more talented team around him this season.
Don’t be surprised if Luck ends up playing his way into the Most Valuable Player conversation.
Do you think Andrew Luck is overrated? Where would you rank him among current active NFL quarterbacks? Let us know your thoughts in the comment box below!
[Featured Image by Andy Clayton-King/AP Images]