There are plenty of concerns for the Indianapolis Colts this week in regard to Sunday’s wild-card game against the Baltimore Ravens.
The Colts’ offensive line is banged up. The Ravens fan base will be eager to heckle their former franchise. Ray Lewis will bring an emotional jolt after announcing his plan to retire after the season. There’s a pretty good back in Ray Rice and a defense lined with Pro Bowl players.
One thing that doesn’t seem to be an issue for the Colts is their rookie quarterback.
“I’m not worried about it at all,” Colts coach Chuck Pagano said. “It goes back to the maturity level. He’s playing right now like he’s been in the league three to four years. This won’t faze him one bit.”
That’s the kind of clout Luck has in Indy these days. There’s a trust from teammates and coaches that belies his experience.
Things weren’t all perfect this season. There was a five-game stretch that started in Week 10 where Luck had 12 turnovers (10 interceptions). That was corrected in the final three weeks when he didn’t have a single turnover.
“It was a sore spot for the offense,” Luck said. “I know a lot of games it felt like those interceptions or fumbles really killed any momentum we had or killed our chance to win. It’s something you focus on as a quarterback, obviously limiting turnovers. Wish it maybe could have come a little sooner.
“Just knowing when to take your chances. I think that’s something I’ve gotten a little better at this year. Then just being accurate with the football. Wish I could be even more accurate, have got a lot to improve in that department. Tempering your chances and knowing when to take them.”
Luck set the NFL rookie record for passing yards, but he has failed to surpass 205 yards or a 50.0 completion percentage in his last four games.
“This week, like any other week, it’s going to be a challenge for him from an identification standpoint,” Pagano said. “As we know, once you get into the later downs, the third downs, this defense will throw some different looks at you.
“From an identification standpoint, he’s seen so much now it’s really going to help him Sunday.”
(source-Kareem Copeland NFL.com)