One of the closest relationships Peyton Manning maintained over the last decade was that with offensive coordinator, Tom Moore. Working together, they constructed one of the most dominant and pressure-inducing offenses in the NFL. Fourteen years after Manning came into the league, Andrew Luck will do his best to step in and fill the shoes of a legend that absolutely transcended the game.
Tom Moore seems to think he's perfectly capable of doing just that.
In an interview with Michele Tafoya, Moore gushed and gushed about the Stanford quarterback and his immense qualities. Over the course of three weeks after the 2011 season concluded, Moore took Luck under his wing and began reviewing film with him for three to four hours per day.
After their sessions of dissecting film, what were Moore's impressions of his "lucky" experience?
"He’s the real deal. If you draft him you never have to worry about anything. You know he’ll be prepared. You know he’ll be in shape. You know he’ll study. You know he’ll practice hard. You won’t have to worry about anything. And you’ll know he’s going to go home and spend two-to-three more hours working on what you talked about."
When asked for specific qualities that make Luck, well, Luck, Moore specifically pointed to Luck's great intelligence:
"Number one, he’s very intelligent. He’s extremely intelligent. Second, he’s from a football family. In the classroom, he has the things you’re looking for. He has recall. You go over something on Monday, and on Friday when you put in the tapes he has instant recall. If I was still coaching I’d love to have him because he can do the things I like to do: audibles at the line of scrimmage; no-huddle. He has a great awareness of what’s happening."
Yes. Unless you've never seen Luck play a snap in your life, this might just fall into the "more hype" category. However, when the man who has worked with arguably the greatest quarterback of all-time, for basically his entire career, speaks this highly of another prospect, it should carry a little more water and only further cements the excitement that comes with drafting Luck.
This guy has all of the tools to be great. Now, he has to "just do it", if you will.
Furthermore, with the selection of Luck, there should be no doubt that he's going to be the starter from day one. However, the question remains: Will he be ready? Moore certainly thinks so and also believes that Luck doesn't need a veteran (Byron Leftwich) to come in and serve as a "mentor".
"The first day of the first practice. That’s what we did with Peyton. I told Kelly Holcomb, 'Go stand behind me. Peyton’s taking the snaps.'
Andrew Luck doesn’t need a mentor. I’ve never bought into the theory that you learn by watching. I think all that stuff is really overrated. Is he going to make mistakes? Yeah, who hasn’t? But I know Andrew’s a strong enough person that he’s going to handle the comparisons [to Manning], and he’ll handle it perfect."
There's also been a lot of
insane speculation that the Colts could/should shock the world and select Robert Griffin III. While this is about as likely as being struck by lightning on a winter day, I guess stranger things have happened. I mean, who seriously thought the Polians were going to get axed? It's a completely different situation, but I'm just saying.
If Griffin's name were to be called on April 26th, I wouldn't start pounding on the floor of my man cave with tears pouring from my eyes. I do like RG3 a lot, but just not as much as Luck. And according to Moore (and the rest of the world, besides Merril Hoge), Luck is without a doubt "Mr. Numero Uno". More specifically, Moore mentioned that he'd draft him and "would never look back."
No hesitation. No, "I think they're both great." Just strong, decisive words from one of the better offensive minds to grace the grid iron.
Moore also spoke on Luck fitting within the new Bruce Arians' offense and a bit more. I suggest you check out the rest of the fantastic interview from Tafoya.
And if you haven't already, I suggest you go ahead and prepare yourself for Andrew Luck to be the face of these new Indianapolis Colts.
I'm pumped. Is it September, yet?