It will be difficult if not impossible to top the following development ahead of the start of the NFL’s 100th season. Andrew Luck is calling it a career.
The Indianapolis Colts quarterback has reportedly told the team’s management that he is retiring from the NFL. This is according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter whose tweet about the news sent social media into a frenzy on Saturday night.
Filed to ESPN: Andrew Luck has informed the Colts he is retiring from the NFL, per source. There will be a press conference Sunday to make it official, but Luck is mentally worn down, and now checking out.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 25, 2019
Report: Indianapolis Colts Quarterback Andrew Luck Retiring From the NFL
Luck had been dealing with a lingering calf/ankle injury that kept him out of the preseason and made his availability for the season opener a question mark. But despite that ailment, there were no indications that he was considering retirement until these recent developments.
The 29-year-old was one of the great bounce back stories of the 2018 season. After missing all of 2017 due to surgery on his throwing shoulder, he rebounded in spectacular fashion. Luck finished the regular season with 4,593 passing yards and 39 touchdowns passes which ranked fifth and second among NFL quarterbacks respectively.
His exploits played a significant role in the Colts finishing the regular season on a blistering tear. After starting the season 1-5, they won nine of their final 10 games to qualify for the playoffs as a wild card. They then managed to knock off the AFC South champion Houston Texans 21-7 in which two of the Colts three touchdowns in the game were Luck touchdown tosses. The following week, they fell to the Kansas City Chiefs which nobody knew at the time would be the final game of Luck’s career.
Prior to the injury issues which began to plague him in 2015, Luck made an immediate impact and looked poised to have the Colts as regular Super Bowl contenders. He led Indy to the playoffs in his first three seasons in the league with his 11 wins as a rookie a record for someone picked first overall. In 2014, he played in his first AFC championship game. And even though the Colts lost fairly decisively to the New England Patriots, Luck appeared to be a legitimate heir apparent to Tom Brady.
But the following season, injuries really began to rear their ugly head. In a Week Nine win over the Denver Broncos in 2015, Luck suffered a lacerated kidney and partially torn abdominal muscle which forced him to miss the rest of the season. The following year, it was clear that his shoulder wasn’t 100 percent which precipitated the surgery which caused him to miss all of 2017.
Luck initially came to the Colts as the first overall pick of the 2012 NFL Draft. They were certainly the beneficiaries of Peyton Manning missing the 2011 season due to neck surgery which precipitated the worst record in the league that year.
His arrival in the pros came after a standout collegiate career at Stanford that saw him finish as the Heisman Trophy runner up as a redshirt sophomore and junior. During his final year in college, he led the Cardinal to the Fiesta Bowl and won the Maxwell Award as well as the Walter Camp Player of the Year. He’s also just the fifth player to garner Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Year honors twice.