Friday, August 16, 2013

Why Andrew Luck is Primed for a Serious Sophomore Slump.

There is a lot of fantasy hype surrounding Andrew Luck this year.  ESPN lists Luck at No.11 for QBs. Fantasy Pros has him at No. 10.  His average draft position is hovering right around 10th.  Don't believe the hype.  In all but the largest leagues, Mr. Luck would make for an excellent QB2 if you can nab him after you've filled out your roster.  Those chances are slim. Popular opinion says your fantasy team could use a little Luck this year and it's likely he'll be drafted as early as the fifth or sixth round.  You don't need Luck that early. There's a lot more value in a proven QB like Ben Roethlisberger or Eli Manning.  Luck is doomed to get hit hard by the sophomore slump. 

Indy's offense is a one trick pony.

Not Calvin Johnson
The Colts are a one-dimensional team, and Andrew Luck is the leader of that dimension.  Last season Andrew Luck benefited from being a rookie.  There was no NFL film for defensive coordinators to study.  Luck's opponents now have 17 games worth of film to sift through to find his weaknesses.  To make matters worse, defensive coordinators only need to watch Andrew Luck when they prepare to stop the Colts.  Nobody is worried about Vick Ballard and his three touchdowns last year.  Nobody should be worried about Ahmad Bradshaw either. He found success in New York because the Giants offense was stacked.  The other Giants' RBs looked good last year too, both David Wilson and Andre Brown averaged at least five yards per carry. Running lanes just seem to open up when a defense has to contend with Eli Manning, Hakeem Nicks, and Victor Cruz.  Don't sleep on the depth the Giants have at receiver either.  While the ageless Reggie Wayne is still a bright spot on the Colts offense, defensive coordinators are going to figure this team out.  Luck is overvalued.  

Luck is at his best when he's throwing picks.

The Lions can't stop a nosebleed.
Luck had six 300-yard performances last year.  In four of those six games, he threw two or more interceptions.  In Luck's four touchdown performance against the mighty mighty Detroit Lions, (his only game with more than two passing TDs) he threw three interceptions.   When Luck throws one or fewer interceptions his passing yards-per-game is 260.  When Luck throws multiple interceptions his passing YPG jumps up to 302.  He also averages more TDs in multiple interception games, 1.60 TDs compared to 1.36 TDs.  This kind of production is not sustainable.    

No new friends.

T.Y. Hilton started from the bottom, now he's here.  It's preseason pal.  Relax.  I don't see much about his game developing.  There aren't many things a five-foot-seven receiver can do in the NFL, and I believe T.Y. hit his ceiling last year.  Darrius Heyward-Bey is new, but he's hardly a friend to QBs.  Luck's college pal, Coby Fleener, had a rough go last season and has since suffered a concussion.  More bad news, DHB has never played a full season in his NFL career.  The Colts bolstered their offensive line, but Luck needs more weapons if you want to see his fantasy numbers improve.  
Pep Hamilton is the new offensive coordinator.  You might remember him.  He coordinated the pedestrian Jets' offense from '03-'05 and the equally unimpressive 49ers offense in 2006.  He went on to coach Brian Griese, Rex Grossman and Jay Cutler from 2007 to 2009 as the Bears' quarterbacks coach.  Then he coached Andrew Luck at Stanford.  Does that make you excited?  

If you can get Andrew Luck in the ninth round or later, go for it! Otherwise, there are better values at quarterback.  

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