The Indianapolis Colts used a seventh round pick in this year's NFL Draft to select Iowa center Austin Blythe. He won't be the starting center protecting Andrew Luck, but he's currently a teammate with the Colts' quarterback nonetheless.
The two were nearly teammates in college, too. When Blythe was in high school deciding where to go to college, he visited Stanford, where his host was none other than Andrew Luck.
Luck and David DeCastro took Blythe to In-N-Out Burger during the lineman's visit, which proved to be the most memorable part of the weekend for him. Blythe ultimately decided to go to Iowa instead of Stanford, but he told ESPN that he rooted for Andrew Luck with the Colts in the NFL because of the experience getting to know him earlier. In a bit of irony, Blythe's last collegiate game came in the Rose Bowl against Stanford (Iowa lost 45-16) as he then headed for the NFL - where he was drafted by the Colts, making him teammates with Luck.
At the NFL Combine earlier this year, Blythe was actually asked what it would be like to protect Luck in the NFL, and he was excited about the possibility. "It would be fun to play for a guy like Andrew Luck, a guy that is a proven winner that obviously loves to play football," Blythe said. "That would be a lot of fun."
Blythe added at the time that he came away from his meeting with the quarterback very impressed. "Really great guy," he said. "What you see is what you get with him. He’s just great guy, really genuine person."
This past weekend, Blythe was in the building with the rest of his fellow Colts rookies working out during the team's rookie mini-camp. And even though the Colts drafted another center in the first round in Ryan Kelly, Blythe is just happy for a chance to compete for a roster spot. "I just wanted an opportunity," he said this weekend. "I’m very thankful that the opportunity is here in Indianapolis. I’m just really looking forward to finishing this rookie camp strong and getting in with the vets.”
One of those veterans is Andrew Luck, who hosted a young Austin Blythe on a visit to Stanford as the high schooler was considering his college options. Though Blythe opted against Luck and Stanford at the time, he's now a teammate with him in the NFL with the Colts. Funny how things work out.