It’s a matchup that has understandably been downplayed by both rookie signal callers.
Andrew Luck vs. Ryan Tannehill?
No, it’s the Indianapolis Colts (4-3) vs. the Miami Dolphins (4-3).
“I have a lot respect for Andrew, but I’m here to play with my teammates and go out there with my team no matter who we’re playing against,” Tannehill said to the Miami media on Wednesday.
The two met each other at the Manning Passing Academy the summer before their senior seasons and both played high school football in the state of Texas.
“I’ve always enjoyed getting to know (Tannehill) and hanging out with him,” Luck said. “Growing up in Houston, I’ve got a lot of buddies that went to (Texas) A&M, know a bunch of guys that played with him. They always spoke very highly of him. I saw why this offseason. Great guy. Obviously a very good player, great quarterback. I’ve always had a very high impression of him.”
Tannehill has helped lead the Dolphins to three straight victories but he is coming off a knee injury he suffered against the Jets last Sunday.
During those three wins, Tannehill is 40-of-60 for 426 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions.
“I think he’s doing great,” Luck said of his fellow rookie quarterback “Obviously, I don’t get to watch much. I think he can make all the throws. He can extend plays, incredibly athletic and makes great throws on the run and in the pocket. He’s a fun guy to watch and I wish him the best as he continues to play in this league.”
While Tannehill made the move from wide receiver to quarterback during his time at Texas A&M, Luck has been a quarterback from a young age following the footsteps of his father, Oliver.
Luck leads all rookies with averaging 281.6 passing yards per game and is one of three rookies in NFL history with at least three 300-yard passing games.
Miami Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin is in his first season at the helm and was apart of the decision making process in choosing Tannehill No. 8 overall in April’s NFL Draft.
Philbin’s pedigree in coaching quarterbacks includes having Packers signal caller Aaron Rodgers under his tutelage for the last five seasons.
The 2012 rookie quarterback class has garnered a lot of attention in the first half of the regular season and Luck falls right in line with that impression.
“He’s very competitive, he’s a good athlete,” Philbin said of Luck. “He’s everything that I think a lot of people that evaluated him though he would be. He’s playing well.”
Tags: Andrew Luck
Posted in Colts Blog
Cameron Wake’s road to one of the NFL’s top pass rushers wasn’t the path most Pro Bowlers endure coming out of college.
Wake graduated from Penn State in 2005 and was an undrafted free agent spending less than two months (May 6-June 22) on an NFL roster (Giants).
Thinking that professional football might not be in his future, Wake became a mortgage broker in 2006.
The itch of getting back on the football field didn’t leave Wake though and in 2007 he entered the Canadian Football League.
Two years later, Wake had recorded 39 sacks and as the two-time CFL Defensive Player of the Year he was ready to give the NFL another shot.
“I guess to be honest when I first got in there (the CFL) I just wanted to play the game, to be able to say that I played football for a living,” Wake said. “You know get back on the field and do what I love. “
“As you go forward and have some more success, you start getting that hint that, you know what, there’s another step here. You can play football at its highest level, and that is the NFL, and you want to be able to make your dreams come true. The reality started showing itself more and more as I played the game and when the opportunity presented itself I tried to take full advantage.”
Wake has been a force since finding his niche in the NFL with the Miami Dolphins.
He had a Pro Bowl season in 2010 with 14.0 sacks and followed that up with 8.5 last year. After a slow start to the 2012 season, Wake has been a terror the last four weeks with all of his 7.5 sacks coming during that stretch.
On Thursday, Wake was named AFC Player of the Month and as the accolades continue to pile up, Wake says he always believed he was capable of this success.
“I am probably the least surprised out of anybody who knows my story or knows me. I always thought that I was a great football player and a great athlete, but this game is not a tell me game, it is a show me game,” Wake said.
“Nobody wants to hear about what you think you can do or how good you think you are. You have to able to strap your chinstrap on and show it. That’s kind of what I’ve done and how I’ve gone about my business here. I might believe in myself but until you put it on paper and sign your work out there on the field, it doesn’t really count.”
The Colts have taken notice of what Wake has done on the field in his four seasons with the Dolphins and knows the challenge in facing one of the league’s top defenses.
“He’s easy to notice. What a great football player and really what a strong defense,” quarterback Andrew Luck said on Wednesday. “I think they’re tops in the defense, or close to the top in red zone, third-down. They do a great job forcing fumbles. I think they play very solid football. It’s going to be a great challenge for us.”
Tags: Andrew Luck
Posted in Colts Blog
A good quarterback would take this time develop experience; a good quarterback would hold onto the ball, rushing, getting closer for a great kicker like Vinatieri to post a field goal and see what the defense can do to stop the other side; a good quarter back would throw the ball for an incomplete if there is no one to pass to. What does Luck do? He makes the openings appear; he moves to the right, drawing the defense and passing a slant ball to the left for a touchdown; he sees a gap and rushes through himself for a first down or better, rather than throwing a non-risky incomplete. No Luck isn’t a good quarterback; Andrew Luck is a GREAT quarterback, already posting game-winning drives in a very young career!
The dumb things we see in the media are the comparisons: what has Andrew achieved compared to RG3? How does he compare to Peyton Manning at a similar time? How does he compare to Manning now? How does he compare to Farve, or McNabb or maybe Montana or Marino? I’m surprised the media hasn’t compared him to Joe DiMaggio!
The truth is the comparisons are meaningless; in fact, they detract from what is happening now. If I have learnt anything about life through my animals, especially my dogs, it’s live in the moment.
Sure, we need to learn from history and never forget those greats that have gone before us to make this game the greatest game on earth! But also learn to enjoy the moment and seize this almost surreal time for the Colts.
Like many, I did predict that, while I couldn’t care less about this season’s playoffs, I wouldn’t be surprised to see us there. Now, the media is saying it. In fact, the football world is saying it; the NFL website survey had the Colts as the team most likely to get a wildcard. But even if we lose every game for the rest of the season, I WILL BE HAPPY IN THE REALIZATION THAT WE ARE DOING EXACTLY WHAT JIM IRSAY SAID, “WE ARE BUILDING”.
Enter Coach Pagano and the rest of the coaching team and things become interesting at Indianapolis. The coaches support each other, communicating at every level, planning, practicing and, most importantly trusting. Trusting themselves, trusting each other, the administration, the players (and it would be impossible to name one when every player on this team remains so committed, so positive and so giving), and most importantly, trusting the fans to support and turn up. And turn up not only from Indianapolis but from all over America and many corners of the world.
And now, through Andrew’s and Riley Hospital’s initiative we take the COLTSTRONG ethos out to the children of Indianapolis, spreading it hopefully throughout America and have them thinking about the food they eat, the exercise they do and even the books they read. Sounds ambitious but the journey of a thousand miles does start with the first step and every Colts’ player will get behind the “Change the Play” movement which will add to the player’s already positive mind set on the gridiron!
Rooting for the Colts a half a world away. Our resident Aussie blogger, Rob Zammit, is a veterinarian and dedicated Colts fan.
Posted in Voice of the Fans
Last week it was Josh Chapman finally strapping on pads for the first time in the NFL.
Now it’s time for the man next to him in the Colts locker room, rookie offensive guard Justin Anderson, to hit the practice field.
Anderson spent the first half of his rookie season on the physically unable to perform list and now can being practicing with the team, as the Colts exercise a three-week window on whether or not to place him on the 53-man roster for the remainder of the season.”
“I’m feeling pretty good,” Anderson said on Wednesday. “It’s been a long time coming. It’s been a slow process but I’m finally back. I’m hoping everything goes as planned.”
It was a difficult offseason for Anderson. Besides a turf injury during his junior season at Georgia, the six-foot-five-inches and 342-pounds Anderson has never had to deal with an injury that has kept him out this long.
While he couldn’t be out in the trenches during practice, Anderson has been ingrained in the film room trying to soak everything in so when this week eventually came he would be more than prepared.
“That’s pretty much all I could do which is not the same,” Anderson said of only getting mental reps. “It’s always better when you’re doing them physically. Mental reps are all that I’ve been getting since camp and it’s time to put them to use.”
At training camp, it was Anderson and Chapman routinely seen on the adjacent practice field rehabbing with each other in hopes of getting on the playing field in their rookie seasons.
Anderson cracked a smile on Wednesday afternoon knowing that in less than an hour he would be putting on the pads for the first of what he hopes is many times in his NFL career.
“I’m kind of excited,” Anderson said. “I kind of got butterflies a little bit because I haven’t played football in a while. I’m kind of excited.”
Tags: josh chapman, Justin Anderson
Posted in Colts Blog