Andrew Luck won’t play in Week 2 of the NFL season. After his Indianapolis Colts got absolutely trucked by the presumed-to-be woeful Los Angeles Rams in Week 1, Colts fans were holding out hope Luck would soon be back to help the team. Unfortunately it doesn’t look like he’ll be returning any time soon.
Colts head coach Chuck Pagano ruled Luck out for Week 2 and wouldn’t even commit to Luck practicing this week. If he doesn’t even hit the practice field, that would likely rule out a return for Week 3 is out of the question as well.
The 27-year-old is still recovering from offseason shoulder surgery and didn’t participate in training camp or the preseason. The shoulder injury was something that had been lingering since 2015. The fact that he had surgery in January and still hasn’t stepped on a practice field has to worry Colts fans.
It has been almost eight months and Luck hasn’t fully recovered. Without him the Colts looked like a legitimate candidate to go 0-16 this season. The defense was torn up by Jared Goff — who isn’t exactly Joe Montana — and the offense looked wildly inept both running and throwing the ball. This team is completely lost right now.
Lets say Luck is out through Week 6 (not a crazy assumption given where things stand) and the team goes 0-6 (again, not a crazy assumption) should the Colts even bring Luck back this year? They would probably have to run the table to even reach the postseason, but given what we saw on Sunday there is almost no chance that happens. This is not a team built to make a playoff run.
If Luck is going to miss anything like half the season, the Colts would almost certainly be best suited by putting him on injured reserve and packing in the season. The AFC South looks much improved, and Indianapolis does not. If the Houston Texans can even get relatively competent quarterback play, they’ll be dangerous, the Jacksonville Jaguars’ defense looks ferocious and Marcus Mariota and the Tennessee Titans are poised to take a big step forward. This might not be the year to force Luck back if he’s not fully recovered.
The Colts should be thinking long term, because right now the team looks awful and Luck isn’t going to turn things around by himself.