The Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos are just passed halftime on Sunday Night Football and so far the young Andrew Luck has outdueled Peyton Manning and spoiling the future Hall of Famer’s return home. Peyton and the Colts are still in the game, however the 26-14 lead the Colts have carved out for themselves is impressive to say the least.
All week long the focus has been on comments by Colts owner Jim Irsay regarding Peyton Manning. The headlines have all gravitated towards the elder passer, while the young gun has quietly waited in the background for the game to begin. Letting your play do the talking is almost a thing of the past with the way the media can bring instant fame to a player willing to run his mouth in today’s NFL, but Andrew Luck is showing that it still is possible to dominate on the field and avoid distractions off of it.
Through the first half, Luck posted 199 yards and 3 touchdown passes. Efficient to the point the Colts offense resembled Manning’s version from a few years back, Luck has his Colts positioned for an upset that was almost being entirely overlooked by experts heading into Sunday Night.
Perhaps this shouldn’t surprise us though.
Luck was the number one overall draft pick a year ago. Impressive enough in college that fans of struggling franchises were begging for their team to ‘suck for Luck’ throughout the season. Indy hit the jackpot with Peyton on the sideline and won the rights to draft him.
In his rookie season, Luck only turned around a 2-14 team and won 11 games en route to the playoffs. Oh, and there was that rookie passing yardage record he set by topping 4,300 yards on the season.
Yet still, many experts fully expected Luck and the Colts to fall back down to Earth in his sophomore campaign, thinking that the talent level other than at quarterback was still closer to the two win team than the playoff one.
Even when the Colts traded for Trent Richardson, a USA Today analyst still called this bunch the sixth worse franchise in the NFL. Astonishing considering how wrong that claim was instantly shown to be.
And now, caught off guard, we all are watching what would go down as a monumental upset in the making. Andrew Luck had the Colts ahead of Peyton Manning in the second half. The undefeated Broncos are looking vulnerable on both sides of the ball as a once porous Indy defense is now shutting down perhaps the greatest quarterback in NFL history better than they did Terrelle Pryor in week one.
Andrew Luck and these Colts are for real, even if Peyton Manning has some magic left in him in his return home.
Senior Sports Editor
The Guardian Express