Andrew Luck took the Colts to three straight 11-5 seasons and playoff berths his first three seasons in the league. However, it fell apart last season as the Colts sputtered to an 8-8 finish and Luck only played in seven games. Even when Luck was in the lineup, he struggled with turning the ball over, at a rate reminiscent of his rookie season.
Whether it was injuries or just plain inconsistency, Luck should be back at full strength this season. I expect him to have a rebound year. In 2014, it looked like Luck was the next big thing.
He threw 40 touchdowns and led the Colts to the AFC Championship Game. The former #1 overall pick was playing like it, and even I thought he was going to be in the same conversation as Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers. Well, that didn’t happen.
Still, with what Luck has done, he puts the Colts at the top of this list. However, the gap between them and the rest of the division is shrinking. They don’t have Matt Hasselbeck anymore, and the veteran came in when Luck was out and held down the fort, going 5-3 in eight starts with nine touchdowns and five interceptions.
Now Luck’s backup is Scott Tolzien, former Wisconsin Badger who played in three games for the Packers in 2013 when Aaron Rodgers was hurt before getting benched for Matt Flynn. Still, it’s better than the Josh Freeman/Ryan Lindley duo that they trotted out for last year’s season finale against the Titans. Still, with a starter who has proven himself to be more than just potential at this point, the Colts get the top spot on this countdown for now.
But with another bad year from Luck or a breakout year from one of the other three starters, this list could look a lot different next offseason.