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Was Chester Rogers wrong to post videos catching passes in Stanford?

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Buffalo Bills v Oakland Raiders Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images

During the slowest period of the NFL off-season, it is sometimes difficult to find discussion-worth stories. For Colts fans, no topic will dominate the headlines more than the status of quarterback Andrew Luck until he get back onto the field and plays winning football. Frankly, it won’t end until Luck guides his team back into the playoffs.

Since Luck underwent surgery to repair a torn labrum in his throwing shoulder, the fan base has had to wait with little new information. This situation was made more difficult a year ago due to team owner Jim Irsay prematurely declaring that Luck would be ready to start the season opener in 2017. When Luck not only didn’t make that deadline but also was unable to even start throwing a football publicly until October, reality started to sink in. When he suffered a setback and was shutdown for the rest of the season, all bets were off.

You will forgive fans, then, for not having a great deal of faith in the process. Local media will continue to ask direct questions with hopes for direct answers until they come — again, likely on the football field. Fans will be sick of hearing about it and desperate to see the nightmare come to an end.

This summer, the fans finally got a glimpse of Andrew Luck throwing a football to his teammates during the team’s mandatory minicamp. While he didn’t throw long passes, he threw the ball with zip and started working through the short route tree.

When the spring training portion of the off-season came to an end and players took off for a six week dark period prior to training camp, Luck explained that he intended to ramp up his throwing program during the break and intended to get to training camp with all governors off. In that effort, he openly planned to meet with teammates to throw on his own.

Flash forward to Rogers tweeting that he was heading to Stanford on July 8th and things began to come together. What reason would Rogers have to visit Stanford, California at this time of the summer other than to catch passes from Luck?

The question was partially answered on Wednesday, July 11th when Chester Rogers shared an Instagram video of him running routes and catching passes at Stanford University.

Of course there was a very important missing part in the video. Who was throwing the passes to Rogers? It seems ridiculous to ask, given everything we know. In fact, the only answer that makes any sense is that these passes were from Andrew Luck.

Why else would Rogers travel to Stanford? Why else would Rogers show himself running routes against air catching passes?

Even if this sort of thing is possible without Luck’s recovery in mind, and it absolutely is possible given that NFL players around the league share videos like this one, surely Rogers would have the presence of mind to not show videos of him catching passes at Stanford from someone else, right?

This question led to a conversation between JMV and Mike Chappell on JMV’s radio show. They discussed the video and questioned whether sharing it was the right decision.

JMV: “Hey, I’m curious. Have you seen the videos a couple of days ago from Chester Rogers? What did you think? .... If I’m Chester Rogers, or anybody for that matter on the Colts, if you can’t show who is actually throwing you the football, which we all believe to be Andrew Luck, then don’t show anything because to me that is just a big tease and Mike, frankly, I don’t think any fan around here needs that type of tease.”

MC: “Yeah, that’s why I would have though Luck would have said, ‘hey listen, we’re doing this and we’re keeping it in-house.’ Chester already put the tease out there. Unless you’re going to show what everybody wants to see, you show nothing.

JMV: “Exactly.”

MC: “Again, I do believe that they’re doing that. I have got no reason not to believe it. I don’t think Chester would have done that had they not been. So, I am buying that Luck will be ready. I am buying that he is throwing and that he is on pace, if not ahead of pace. Don’t tease the fan base.

JMV: You think about what has transpired, at least with Luck in mind, over the past year and then everything that has been wrong, which is literally everything — everything has been wrong in the last three years. I just think that is misguided at best and I am sure that it is not done pointedly but I would agree. Just don’t show it. Go out, catch your passes, get your work done and don’t show it.

MC: Again, you have got nobody really overseeing it. You’ve got players and they think it is this, that, and the other but again, in the grand scheme of things don’t do it because of the optics and because you’ve seen them before. If you’re not going to show Luck whipping the ball around, don’t do it.

Look, it is clear that the Indianapolis media and Colts fan base is just a tad sensitive over what is going on with Andrew Luck at the moment. Everyone wants to see Luck throwing the football over great distances, with great arm strength, and without a pitch count. It is easy to understand why it Rogers’ Instagram video would get a mixed response.

Still, are people making a mountain out of a mole hill here? Is this something that fans would rather see, even if they have to draw their own conclusions? Would it be better to see nothing?

Poll

Did Chester Rogers make a bad decision when he shared video of him passing catches in Stanford from an unseen quarterback?

This poll is closed

  • 7%
    Yes
    (127 votes)
  • 22%
    No
    (361 votes)
  • 69%
    Complete Non-Issue
    (1108 votes)
1596 votes total Vote Now

JMV and Chappell went on to discuss whether it is likely that other receivers are catching passes from Luck over the summer. Ultimately, both men agreed that more than one receiver was likely in attendance. One player who Chappell believes is likely not catching passes from Luck this summer is T.Y. Hilton.

JMV: “I’m assuming more folks would be out there than just Chester. I mean, are we assuming that Grant is out there, that T.Y. is out there?”

MC: “I don’t think T.Y. is out there. I mean, we asked him about that in the off-season and he said, ‘eh, not really.’ Chester Rogers obviously, Ryan Grant maybe, maybe a couple of rookies. I think we asked T.Y. once last year in the off-season, something about working extra on Tuesdays with Jacoby Brissett and he said, ‘eh, that’s just my day off.’ So, I would be very surprised if T.Y. is out there.”

JMV: “Yeah, not going above and beyond I guess.... I hope that Reggie Wayne informs T.Y. that maybe you should do a little bit of extra. You know? Maybe you should.”

MC: “Yeah, I am not saying that he is not out there but when we asked him point blank about working extra with Luck in the off-season he made it sound like, ‘we’re good, you know, we’ve done this for four years,’ or whatever, ‘we don’t need to.’ But yeah, this is one of those where normally Reggie and Marvin didn’t do this but when it is a special time you do special things and I think that it would behoove them to do it but that’s just T.Y.

Assuming Luck is throwing to receivers over the summer as planned, who he should be throwing to is next on the list of discussion. On the one hand, it seems obvious that new players or young players who he hasn’t had the chance to work with much in the past should get priority and to hopefully establish some rapport and timing. On the other hand, even established receivers haven’t caught a pass from Luck in a year and a half. In fact, even the veterans haven’t caught a meaningful passes from Luck since he had surgery on his throwing shoulder.

Assuming he is not, should T.Y. Hilton be involved in Luck’s summer throwing program? Is it unreasonable for the media to take stabs at him given his yearly production and established on-field chemistry with Luck?

Poll

Should T.Y. Hilton be involved in Andew Luck’s summer throwing program?

This poll is closed

  • 65%
    Yes
    (829 votes)
  • 2%
    No
    (28 votes)
  • 32%
    It Probably Won’t Matter Either Way
    (415 votes)
1272 votes total Vote Now