A lot has been made about Andrew Luck’s return to the football field for the Indianapoils Colts, and he caused some noise on Friday when he mentioned that he is working on his mechanics.
It’s something we had heard before from new quarterbacks coach Brian Schottenheimer, but Luck talked about it on Friday as well. But what did he actually mean? It turns out the change isn’t as drastic as you’d think.
“It has been back to basics,” Luck said. “Footwork ground-up certainly. Some habits like anything are hard to kick in a sense and some come a little faster than others, but again that’s why you practice, that’s why you do individual, that’s why you do drill work during special teams, that’s why you focus on feet before anything else. He does a great job of not just telling you, ‘Alright, you need to do this.’ There’s a drill involved in helping that get done. There’s a technique involved that he teaches you, and not just me, but the rest of the quarterbacks as well.”
So wait, is this a complete change in Luck’s technique, or is it just a refinement of it?
“No, it’s a refinement of a lot of things,” Luck said. “The fundamentals of dropping back, by and large are the same. It’s a refinement. For example, it’s mirroring your feet to a certain play. You talked about a different playbook, it’s learning what sort of sequence of drop marries with this play versus that coverage. That goes for every play.”
In other words, Andrew Luck is working on learning a new system, and a part of that is learning the footwork that goes with that system. What Luck needs to do is learn the correct footwork for certain plays so that he’s not constantly focusing on his mechanics when he’s running a play. He needs to be able to do it naturally, and that’s what he’s working on. For the most part, things will be the same and most people probably won’t be able to notice any difference. But he’s working on tweaking, reworking, and refining his footwork and other mechanics to continue to improve and adapt to a new system.
The uproar over why the Colts would bother messing with Luck’s mechanics and the debate about whether it was a good thing or not turns out to have been mostly useless. The Colts aren’t changing who Andrew Luck is; rather he’s refining his mechanics to best fit a new system. When it’s put that way, it’s not really a big deal after all.