I have heard lots of chatter about Luck's arm strength. Some say it is fine other that it is poor. So I thought I would find some footage of his deep passes and see for myself. I did notice that his receivers had to often adjust to the ball or slow their routes. However I noticed this happened at varying ranges of 40-50 yard passes and I began to wonder if this is an issue of arm strength or "touch" on the deep ball?
After the jump is a sample of some of the footage I could find (albeit a small sample size). Apologies for any timing /technical issues with the videos (I didn't have time to double check them all).
51yds in the air (from his knees) against ASU http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rWu9SEerxkU (how can you not factor in this pass!?)
51yds in the air http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BnWt5ED4tPc&feature=related
-A perfect pass in stride
20yd line (center of field) to back left corner of the endzone approx 40 yds in the air (58 seconds into video) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5BaOEph_vKM
-Delivered high over the corner, on a low to medium arc.
42yds in the air (3:42 into video(same video as above))
-receiver had to slow down
45yds in the air http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rYhULSY6Yfo
50yds in the air (1:22 into video) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WQ-a-N9Y5mc
47yds in the air http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tBz2ZOTXlKg
-receiver had to turn (though it didn’t look like he had to slow his route, maybe slightly)
51yds in the air http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ik-LNTMYn50&feature=related
-Hit the receiver in stride. Luck appears to really wind up and step into this one.
40yds in the air (1:45 into video) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cqUH_GMSGIs&feature=related
42yds in the air (4:38 into video) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tPKUUHEZbjY
My conclusions: First of all, if you watch any highlight video of Luck's you will know that anything inside 35yds is getting thrown accurately and on a rope. Past this range however he seem to become a bit inconsistent. However, I do NOT think this is an issue of arm strength. If it was, you would see total inconsistency on his 50yd passes, but, in fact, these appear to be some of his more accurate throws.
I am no QB guru, but it seems to me that between 40-45 yds he hasn't quite nailed down his touch (which will obviously improve over time) and past 45 yards, when he is forced to flat out rip the ball, it comes more naturally and he gets a more accurate throw.
Therefore I think his underthrown balls are an issue of deep ball accuracy which will be corrected and improved over time. I do not think his arm strength is anything to be concerned about.
But who knows? I may just be biased. What do you guys, who know way more about football than I do, think?