POWERED BY

NFL

Andrew Luck Sweepstakes: Miami and Indianapolis are Neck and Neck, with St. Louis* Still in the Mix

We’ve been looking at the Andrew Luck sweepstakes since last November, when it was clear that the Stanford QB was going to be a franchise player in the NFL. Luck passed on the draft in 2011, but when he comes out next April, he’ll certainly go first. This was my guess in May; I even wrote a post about it in the preseason. Who has the best shot of getting him? Through seven weeks – 9 to go! – here’s a breakdown of the contenders:

Indianapolis Colts (0-6)Takeaway from the 62-7 drubbing: it’s clear this team has thrown in the towel on the season. Next up: at Tennessee (loss), vs. Atlanta (loss). Then, a “dangerous” spot – home vs. lowly Jacksonville. If Curtis Painter’s not careful, he could easily win this game. Could the Colts beat Cam Newton at home? If not, it’s looking like 1-win for Indy in 2011.

Miami Dolphins (0-6) – How thrilled was owner Stephen Ross that Tim Tebow intervened (he recovered the onside kick and the fumble in OT) and beat his Dolphins? Miami needs the No. 1 pick more than Indy – the Dolphins need a new coach, need to fill an always-empty stadium, and need to improve rapidly in a division with the Patriots, Bills and Jets. Problem is, the schedule is a little easier than Indy’s – I think Miami could win one or possibly two games in the November stretch at KC, vs, Washington and vs. Buffalo. More realistic NFL draft choice: Matt Barkley, QB, USC.

St. Louis Rams (0-6) – The tough schedule is to blame for the awful start – they’ve only scored single digits in three of the last four games – but the Rams should be able to pick up a few wins over scrubs like Arizona and Seattle (and maybe Cleveland and Cincinnati). More realistic NFL draft choice: Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State.

Fringe contenders: Like an NCAA tournament bubble team, these guys need help:

Jacksonville (1-5): Want to get in the mix? You can get it started tonight at home against Baltimore … by playing like Miami and Indianapolis! Indifferent. Uninspired. Play like a champion? Ha. Play like you’d rather be stuffing your face at the Cheesecake Factory. Let Baltimore run you out of your own (empty) building! Yes, I’m on the Ravens -10. More realistic NFL draft choice: Matt Kalil, OL, USC.

Arizona (1-5): Playing in the weakest division in football – Seattle, Arizona and St. Louis are a combined 3-15 – I could see Kevin Kolb winning a shootout or two and finishing with 3-4 wins. But damn, that defense has less teeth than the West Virginia freaks with Mountain Dew mouth. More realistic NFL draft choice: Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU.

Minnesota (1-6): Too frisky on offense to finish anywhere near the real dregs of the league. Of course, if Adrian Peterson goes down, the Vikings quickly become a contender. More realistic NFL draft choice: Jonathan Martin, OL, Stanford.

Faded: Forget about it

Kansas City (3-3): Through the first two weeks, the Chiefs looked like serious contenders. Three wins a row! Little or none of the wins have to do with QB Matt Cassel, though. He stinks.

* Would have to trade the Luck pick, since they couldn’t unload Bradford. Or, they could just keep him.

Because you want to see it first!

Like and follow The Big Lead today!

blog comments powered by Disqus