Andrew Luck has thoroughly impressed the masses in two preseason starts, but hold back on leaping to any major conclusions just yet.
Through two exhibition outings, one of the most highly-touted quarterbacks to ever enter the NFL has undoubtedly lived up to the lofty expectations.
However, reserve your judgement until, at the very least, he’s played in the season opener against the Chicago Bears on September 9.
Firstly, in the preseason, you can’t project the “good” plays automatically transitioning to the regular season while discounting the “bad” plays due to the fact that it’s an exhibition game.
To use Luck as an example, a perfectly-timed seam throw to Reggie Wayne against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday night, to many, was a sure sign of what’s to come. But if that’s the case, a toss zipped late and slightly behind Wayne that was intercepted by Ike Taylor should foreshadow the future, as well.
Remember how pedestrian Cam Newton’s 2011 preseason was? Don’t forget Rex Grossman, who pieced together a rather impressive preseason last year, either.
Now, Grossman’s past regular season failures should have been more telling than anything, but there were many people who thought he’d be productive in 2011 after his solid preseason.
While exhibition outings can indicate what to expect in the future for certain players, many times it doesn’t, so why waste time? There’s no secret formula or correlation between individual performance in the preseason and individual performance in the regular season.
Well, actually, I get it. Everyone has an innate desire to be the first to say they predicted greatness, but honestly, what’s so hard about waiting until a meaningful game is played?
This is not to say Luck’s going to be a bust, or that he’ll go from a poised rookie in the preseason to a totally flustered and unproductive youngster when the games count.
Based on everything we saw from Luck in college, that’s unlikely. Against the Steelers, everything checked out. He was, for the most part, accurate. His timing was good. He was calm in the pocket.
But the fact remains that, right now, we just don’t know. We shouldn’t use two preseason games as a legitimate basis to call Luck the Rookie of the Year favorite.
Now, if he lights up the Bears in a few weeks, that’ll be a different story.