Andrew Luck: The Comeback Kid

by Michael Drahota | Posted on Monday, September 8th, 2014 | 0

Green Bay Packers v Indianapolis Colts

Last night (Sun., September 7, 2014), the Indianapolis Colts lost to the Denver Broncos in Week 1 action thanks to a first half barrage from Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning and Julius Thomas.

But it was how they lost that makes the game noteworthy. True to form, third year quarterback Andrew Luck brought the team back from an early 24-0 deficit to lose by a score of 31-24, furthering his reputation as the fiercest comeback player in the NFL right now.

Luck got Indy’s action started off with a late first half touchdown run, and the Colts closed the deficit to 24-10 in with a third quarter field goal from Adam Vinatieri. The Broncos struck back with a fourth quarter touchdown run from second year running back Montee Ball, and that proved to be the score that won the game.

Luck lead the Colts on two fourth quarter touchdown drives, finishing them off with a 41-yard scoring pass to tight end Dwayne Allen and a 9-yard pass to newly signed wide receiver Hakeem Nicks. The Colts recovered an onside kick with over seven minutes left, and they also forced the Broncos to stall out late in the fourth quarter when they surprisingly threw back-to-back pass plays on second and third down to stop the clock.

Luck didn’t pull off another miraculous comeback last night, but he very nearly did. His penchant for finding himself in deep water is nothing new; he famously lead the Colts to a 28-point comeback over the Kansas City Chiefs in the 2013 playoffs, the second biggest comeback in NFL history.

It’s also not Luck’s fault that his defense allows teams to jump out to such big leads. He may open the door by failing to keep first and second quarter drives going, but the bottom line is that the Colts could not stop Thomas at all in the first half. He finished with 7 catches for 104 yards and an incredible three touchdowns, but he also coughed up the onside kick that put the Colts back in the game.

While you may think this is too much to heap praise upon Luck in a loss, simply take a step back and examine his relatively short body of work in the NFL. He starts slow, but when he finally builds up the momentum, he’s quickly proving that he’s one of the most effective quarterbacks in the NFL in regards to clutch situations.

Regardless of all stats, records, endorsements, and other superfluous pursuits, that’s what you want in an NFL quarterback: someone who’s at his best when it matters most.

Is Luck there yet? No, but he’s well on his way to accomplishing that goal, and at a very young age. That’s a scary thought for the AFC South, and the NFL as a whole really. When Luck got into his groove last night, it was like the wind was immediately sucked out of the Broncos’ sails. And they’re by far the best offense in the NFL.

The same thing happened to Kansas City, and the same thing happened to a multitude of teams that thought they had Luck right where they wanted him last year.

He’s a special talent; one that only comes along every so many years. Luck has a very serviceable if not outstanding group of wide receivers and tight ends, and his running game is average on its best day.

But that doesn’t matter to Luck. No matter what kind of odds he finds himself facing, he never gives up, and more often than not, he delivers. You can’t coach that, and something tells me it’s a dynamic that is going to make Andrew Luck one of the greats one day.

About the Author

Both an avid NFL fan and analyst, I’ve been following professional football since the late 1980s. I’m also an avid fantasy football player with several league victories under my belt. Check out my NFL articles on TSM for the latest NFL news, highlights, predictions, and more.

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