NFL on CBS analyst Ian Eagle saw Andrew Luck last Thursday against the Jets, and he’ll see Luck this Sunday against the Bengals.
Eagle has been nothing but impressed by his interactions with Luck, who has led the Colts (4-2) to four straight wins and has become, at 25, the top young quarterback in football. He has absorbed so much, so fast.
Have the Colts in any way limited their playbook for Luck, or have they simply thrown the kitchen sink at him and told him to digest everything because he’s just that special?
“Yes. To answer in the simplest terms, yes, he’s got the full complement at his fingertips – the full trust of that coaching staff as well,” Eagle said on The Damon Amendolara Show. “He and (offensive coordinator) Pep Hamilton have a tremendous relationship going back to their collegiate days together at Stanford, so the chemistry – the sense of what Pep is looking to do – the trust level is very high.”
Luck has thrown for 1,987 yards and 17 touchdowns this season and is on pace to shatter career highs across the board. Luck is on pace for 45 passing touchdowns; he threw 46 in his first two seasons combined.
Luck’s top receiver, T.Y. Hilton, already has 40 catches for 604 yards and a touchdown.
“Just think about how scary that (duo) can be in the AFC South for the next 10 years, potentially,” Eagle said. “Hilton is dynamic, and he and Luck are on the same page.”
They’re also easy to compare to former great Colts duos – say, for example, Peyton Manning and Reggie Wayne. The comparisons between Luck and Manning, of course, are inevitable, but Eagle believes they’re right on the money.
“I can tell you this,” Eagle said. “Having done my first game for CBS in 1998 – which happened to be Peyton Manning’s first game as an NFL quarterback – I went into those meetings, and I really had no idea what to expect. I had never had those types of meetings before with players and coaches, and I walked out of the Peyton Manning meeting and thought, ‘Wow, this is unbelievable what these guys are like.’ And and I quickly realized, ‘No, no, it’s just him. He’s like that.’ He was so far advanced in where he was supposed to be (in terms of) mentally understanding the offense (and) looking at things almost as a coach – just like he does today.
“And I could say the same about Andrew Luck,” Eagle continued. “There’s just a different level of understanding. He’s exceptionally bright. And when you ask him a question, he’s (the rare person) who actually thinks before he answers. He ponders. He doesn’t just blurt out an answer to get through the interview. He truly thinks about the best way to answer it and give you an honest assessment of whatever the question was. He’s a deeper thinker. He’s a guy that’s going to be a dominant player in this league for a very long time, and I think he’ll be not just a Super Bowl champion. You’re talking about multiple Super Bowls for this guy down the road.”