Injured Luck shoulders Indianapolis’ fans angst
Seeing your $140-million quarterback on the sidelines in gym clothes, physically unable to perform, is a lousy way to kick off training camp.
But that’s the way it was and the way it’s going to be for a while for the NFL’s Indianapolis Colts.
Andrew Luck revealed over the weekend that after undergoing undisclosed shoulder surgery shortly after last season — reportedly on a partially torn labrum in his right throwing shoulder — he went nearly seven months without throwing a football as he rehabbed for up to 10 hours a day, six days a week.
Believe it or not, Luck already is entering Year 6 in the NFL. Before last season, he signed a six-year, $140-million extension with the Colts, who selected him first overall in 2012.
Luck knows some people are wondering if he’ll ever come close to justifying the next-JohnElway label that got slapped on him coming out of Stanford. Before the past two or three seasons, everyone wanted to know if he could get his interceptions under control or get enough protection to not be practically killed every game.
This whole year must be killing him more.
Especially so Sunday, what with training camp underway and thousands of concerned fans in the stands at Lucas Oil Stadium. Luck’s most meaningful physical contribution Sunday was signing dozens of autographs afterward.
When he spoke to reporters Saturday morning, his only media access over the weekend, Luck assured Colts fans “there’s no reason to freak out.” He will be back. Soon. It’s just that neither he nor Colts doctors and trainers can say exactly when.
“I will be better than I was coming into this, I know that,” Luck said of his shoulder surgery and rehab. “I don’t know what day it’s going to be. I don’t know what week. But I definitely will be (back soon).
“I love practice and I would love to be out there for every practice, every week. I’m confident that when the time is right for me and when I’m able to practise, whenever that is, that I’ll be up to speed and productive enough in games to give this team my best.”
Until then, Scott Tolzien is the unquestioned No. 1. Stephen Morris and rookie Phillip Walker have nowhere near the passing accuracy nor the knowledge of the Colts’ offence at this stage to routinely make plays, complete passes and move the chains as Tolzien can.
Of course, Tolzien can’t do it as proficiently or dynamically as the guy on the sidelines.