The Herald Bulletin

Evening Update

Pro Sports

February 20, 2014

Combine Notebook: Luck still drawing praise from Stanford

INDIANAPOLIS — Andrew Luck's rapid ascension in his first two NFL seasons has surprised even some of his former college teammates.

"I knew he was an incredible player," Stanford guard David Yankey said Thursday at the NFL Scouting Combine. "At the time, we thought he was the best player in college football. But I didn't realize exactly how good he was until he got to the NFL and started playing."

Luck is the first quarterback to throw for more than 8,000 combined yards in his first two seasons and has led the Indianapolis Colts to playoff berths in both years. In January, he led the second-biggest comeback in NFL history, rallying Indianapolis from a 28-point deficit to defeat the Kansas City Chiefs 45-44 in the AFC Wild Card round.

But pass protection, especially on the interior of the offensive line, has been an issue. Yankey is the top-rated guard on NFL Media draft expert Mike Mayock's pre-combine list but could last to the second day because of the depth of this year's class.

A record 102 underclassmen declared for May's draft, including Yankey — who already has graduated from Stanford but has one year of eligibility remaining.

"I wasn't focused on what the other guys were doing," Yankey said. "It was about me and where I was heading."

For his first two years as a starter, Yankey played in current Colts offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton's scheme. The experience gave him a power-blocking background many of his peers lack.

"Pep is awesome," Yankey said. "I loved having him as a coach. He's a guy who is really witty and keeps things fun in meetings. But he also has great schemes. It's pretty evident from the job he's done in Indy."

MORE LOVE FOR LUCK: San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh shrugged off many questions during his 15 minutes on the podium at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Text Only
Pro Sports
  • Judge OKs record-setting $2 billion sale of Clippers

    Embattled Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling lost his attempt to block the $2 billion sale of the team to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

    July 28, 2014

  • SPT - HB0729 - Chris Rainey - DK Colts release RB Rainey

    Just two days after earning praise for his playmaking ability from head coach Chuck Pagano, running back Chris Rainey was waived by the Indianapolis Colts on Monday morning. The news was broken in a press release around 8:30 a.m. and later confirmed by Pagano during an afternoon session with the media.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0729 - Andrew Luck - JC 1 Luck still learning

    Wind chill estimates put the temperature at 59 degrees Monday morning at Anderson University. During one stretch of his fifth training camp practice of the year, however, it likely felt much colder to Andrew Luck.

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • SPT - HB0728 - Colts Camp - Castonzo 2 - 278 Castonzo comfortable with Colts' changing O-line

    For all the changes along the offensive line the past three seasons, Anthony Castonzo has been the lone constant. He joined a veteran group anchored by center Jeff Saturday in 2011, was part of a remodeled unit in 2012 and became a mainstay at left tackle for all 16 games last year.

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos

  • SPT - HB0728 - Colts Camp - Allen 1 - 290 Colts' offense adapting to new arsenal

    Third-year tight end Dwayne Allen suffered a season-opening hip injury in Week 1 against the Oakland Raiders, then watched as left guard Donald Thomas, running backs Vick Ballard and Ahmad Bradshaw and wide receiver Reggie Wayne also exited the lineup over the next six weeks. It left offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton scrambling to come up with new ways to attack defenses with an ever-changing cast of characters.

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos

  • SPT-HB0727-Luckwatch-ColtsCamp-094.jpg Colts Quick Hits: Sunday, July 27

    Notes,news and fun facts from Colts Training Camp at Anderson University.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT-HB0727-AndrewLuck3749.jpg Change the Play

    Andrew Luck had an active childhood filled with a myriad of sports and activities. Now, he wants Hoosier kids to have that opportunity, too.

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos

  • SPT - HB0727 - RBs - Colts Camp - 141 Colts have options in Ballard's absence

    Chuck Pagano delivered the news Saturday afternoon in a solemn tone, confirming running back Vick Ballard will miss the 2014 season. "It's a part of the game. It's an ugly part of the game," the Indianapolis Colts head coach said shortly after revealing an MRI on Friday night found a torn Achilles tendon in Ballard's left foot. "It's a tough pill to swallow. You never want to lose anybody."

    July 26, 2014 4 Photos

  • Super Bowl MVP Warner has high praise for Luck

    It's no secret the NFL's version of football has become a quarterback's game. Kurt Warner is one of the men who helped make it that way. And he had plenty of praise for the man many see as the future at the quarterback position, third-year rising star Andrew Luck.

    July 26, 2014

  • luck watch.jpg Colts Quick Hits: Saturday, July 26

    Notes,news and fun facts from Colts Training Camp at Anderson University.
     

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo