It was third down and the Colts needed 23 yards for a first down. Andrew Luck dropped back to throw and effortlessly fit a pass in between three Texan defenders to fellow rookie T.Y. Hilton who ended up taking it to the house. I sat there with my mouth agape, still shocked at the beauty of that pass. It really then hit me that honestly, there really is no race for rookie of the year. There is a clear cut winner, and that folks is Andrew Luck, Quarterback for the Indianapolis Colts.
The things that Andrew Luck is doing with such a young team is unheard of. He took the worst team in the NFL just a season ago to the playoffs this year. Here is Luck’s main case however: he did this remarkable feat with a supporting cast of almost all rookies on offense and virtually the same players on a defense that ranked as one of the NFL’s worst a season ago.
The other two rookie quarterbacks in the running for this award are Robert Griffin III of the Washington Redskins, and Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks. Both men are by all means fantastic players and future superstars, but the help they received throughout the season from their teammates cannot be overlooked.
In Robert Griffin’s case, he has an arsenal of veteran wide receivers and also one of the NFL’s better runningbacks. Redskins runningback Alfred Morris has run for more than 1600 yards, which is nearly double the total of Colts runningback Vick Ballard. Griffin also has very experienced wideouts in Pierre Garcon and Santana Moss. Luck has a very good receiver in Reggie Wayne, but the rest of his supporting cast is composed of all rookies.
What really separates Luck from Griffin however, is the stats. Luck has thrown over 1000 yards more than Griffin and has also thrown for 3 more Touchdowns. While many Griffin supporters will look at this and point towards Griffin’s exceptional rushing stats, Luck still leads Griffin in all-purpose yards by 600. This clearly proves that Luck is a better candidate than Griffin for this award.
Now let’s compare Luck to the other candidate Russell Wilson. As a 3rd round draft pick, no one expected much out of Wilson this season. However, he has caught the NFL by surprise after leading his team to the playoffs.
What really helped Wilson however was the Seahawks run game and terrorizing defense. We already discussed the Colt’s running game but let’s take a look at their defense. The Seahawks had the No. 4 defense in the entire NFL. As a rookie that is a huge safety net and it also gives you a license to play a bit more freely since the defense has your back.
Now Andrew Luck guided his team to the playoffs with one of the worst defenses in the league. The Colts only ranked at No.26 and gave up 70 more yards a game than the Seahawks defense. Andrew Luck basically took matters into his own hands and has delivered.
A rookie quarterback has never done this much in a single season. There really shouldn’t even be an argument here. Give Andrew Luck what he deserves.