Draft board overall prospect rank: #1
Draft board overall quarterback rank: #1
Overall rating: 100 (once in a decade prospect)
40 time: 4.67
· Football and non-football smart
· Calls most of his team’s plays in the huddle
· 3.5 GPA at Stanford
· Pro Style experience
· High character
· Natural leader – teammate’s follow and gravitate to him
· Humble, likable, interviews well, has all the intangibles
· Well coached
· Can make every throw
· Above average arm strength
· Elite accuracy
· 3 year starter
· 2 time Heisman runner up
· 2 years of elite statistical production (70.7%/9.0 YPA/32:8, 71.3%/8.7 YPA/37:10)
· Winner (23-3 record in last two seasons)
· Won and succeeded with and without Jim Harbaugh- survived coaching change
· Highly competitive, returned for his season senior to win a National title
· Survived the microscope and scrutiny he was put under after returning to Stanford
· Elite record and statistical production with little offensive supporting cast
· Frequently had to throw to covered guys, able to throw guys open
· Puts the ball in the perfect spot with excellent consistency
· Great pocket presence
· Mature footwork
· Above average mobility and athleticism
· Can throw on the run and under pressure
· Smart decision maker
· Good field vision, goes through his progressions
· Not afraid to throw it away when nothing is open
· NFL bloodlines
· Typical NFL build (6-4 234)
· Has all the tools
· Can handle adversity and win ugly (USC game)
· Supported by an excellent offensive line
· Never took a lot of hits
· Rarely under a lot of pressure
· Occasionally flustered when progression is sped up
· He’s got everything you want, but what happens when he gets punched in the mouth?
· Not elite arm strength
· Pac-12 competition was not elite
· Led a conservative offense that ran the ball a lot, took some of the pressure off him
· 7 interceptions in his last 6 games, 9 in last 9
· Intercepted short too often – sets up pick sixes
· Leaves ball high sometimes
· No defining game
· No defining win
Comparison: More athletic Eli Manning
The Andrew Luck comparison was tough because there isn’t one quarterback in the NFL he is similar to. The Peyton Manning comparisons make some sense because of how cerebral he is and because he has unconventional charisma. Personality and intelligence wise, the Peyton Manning comparisons are good, but I think those are a bit lofty. He’s also much more athletic than Manning. Because of his athleticism, he’s often compared to another former Stanford quarterback, John Elway. However, I feel those too are lofty.
I picked Eli Manning because I think it’s a more down to earth comparison. In a lot of ways, Eli is very similar to Peyton Manning. Andrew Luck’s unconventional charisma and goofy “aw shucks” leadership style is very Eli Manning like, as is his competitiveness and ability to lead comebacks. Both Eli Manning and Andrew Luck come into the league with high expectations and comparisons to Peyton Manning. Both are #1 overall picks and I think both will fall short of the Peyton Manning comparisons. However, if Andrew Luck has 2 rings before he’s 30 like Eli Manning, I doubt he’ll care. I see Andrew Luck’s career taking a similar path to Eli’s. He’ll take a lot of scrutiny because of the hype, and fall short, but still have an excellent career.
He’s not perfect. No quarterback is. You can find something wrong with every quarterback prospect, even ones who go #1. Cam Newton last year was extremely raw. Sam Bradford was coming out of a system that bloats stats and coming off a separated shoulder. Matt Stafford needed to improve decision making. JaMarcus Russell had character issues. Alex Smith had a weak level of competition. Same with David Carr. Eli Manning was never a dominant college quarterback. The list goes on and on.
Luck is better than all of those quarterbacks. I think he’s got the cleanest scouting report of any quarterback since Peyton Manning. He can get a bit frazzled under pressure in the pocket and he has been spoiled by this offensive line. He leaves balls high sometimes. He’s also been spoiled by a good running game, though he’s proven, that can get it done even when the running game isn’t going. If his defense plays a better game, he wins this one even with all of his receivers making mistakes.
However, he’s one of the smartest college quarterbacks you’ll ever see. He makes all the adjustments at the line of scrimmage. He has decision making that quarterbacks his age just don’t have. He’s had a ton of success with crap at wide receiver. His pocket presence is also rare for his age. He can get frazzled, but he does know when to flee the pocket and he throws on the run extremely well. He’s also got all the intangibles. He’s a fierce competitor and a great leader.
He doesn’t have the strongest arm, but he can make all the throws and he’s extremely accurate. He handles adversity with amazing poise. He hasn’t had the strongest level of competition, but he’s played well against Oregon and USC. He’s not perfect, but as I said before, he has the cleanest scouting report of any quarterback since Peyton Manning.