Saturday, January 1, 2011
Watch the above clip to see Andrew Luck delivers one of the hardest hits you will ever see a quarterback dish out.
I wrote a long piece on Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck for Sunday's newspaper and online that you can see here, trying to give Carolina Panther fans an inside look at the quarterback and his background in case he does end up declaring early for the NFL draft and becoming the Panthers' No.1 pick.
The piece mentions in a couple of places some punishing hits that Luck doled out -- one while he had the ball and was running and one when he tackled an opposing cornerback who had recovered a fumble. The first one is at the top of this blog -- the second one is here and also well worth a look as Luck runs over a California safety.
And if you're really wanting a deep look at Luck highlights, here's an 8-minute video Stanford put together about him as part of his Heisman Trophy candidacy (he finished second, to Auburn's Cam Newton).
Luck says that "99.999 percent" of the time quarterbacks are the ones who are taking the hits so he "relishes" the opportunity to give them out.
Of course, Luck is ultra-smart, too -- he has 350 variations of plays on the wristband he wears, and knows them all very well, his coaches say. He's 6-foot-4, 235 pounds, has a rocket arm... I could go on and on, and many people do. Everyone who comes to watch him says he's about as NFL-ready as they come.
But those hits? To me, they don't just mean Luck is big. They mean he's a football player, and the sort of leader that his teammates will follow anywhere. Some NFL team -- and I hope it is the Panthers, because it would be so darn interesting -- is going to be very lucky to get him.
Note to readers: I'm still in Florida, where I'm working on a story on Jim Harbaugh (a future candidate for the Panthers' coaching job?) that will come out in Monday's newspaper and online. I will not be blogging during the Panthers-Falcons game -- however, I will contribute a "5 things" blog at some point after the game.