Andrew Luck ranks dead last among QBs this season
Since entering the league in 2012, Andrew Luck has never graded outside Pro Football Focus’ top 13 quarterbacks. This year, he sits at the basement of the position, with a 42.1 overall grade, weighed down largely by his league-worst passing grade of 38.7. Luck has seen his performance regress in every major category, culminating in last night’s loss to the Panthers on MNF.
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While Luck may have made some fourth-quarter plays to get the Colts back into the equation, his interception to set up the game-winning field goal was a terrible decision. If that play didn’t sum up the dreadful season he’s had, the pass he threw right to Luke Kuechly in the end zone when they were still down by three did. Here’s an overview of the recent struggles of the former No. 1 overall pick.
It was obvious last night that Luck was forcing plays under pressure. It’s something he’s been doing all season, reflected in the numbers. Overall, Luck has been accurate on just 48.7 percent of passes under pressure in 2015, compared with 59.8 percent last year. He’s also already thrown as many interceptions when under pressure (six) as he did in the entirety of 2014, with significantly fewer touchdowns (four compared with 11). But the issues are not confined to desperation passes in the attempt to avoid sacks, with another six interceptions coming with a clean pocket. (He leads the league with 12 total picks, and owns the worst accuracy percentage.)
Luck’s performances stand is stark contrast to the two starts by Matt Hasselbeck, who led the same group of players to two divisional wins. The veteran Hasselbeck showed composure in his outings, getting the ball out quickly to the open receiver. Although only a small sample size, Hasselbeck’s numbers under pressure are impressive. On 14 dropbacks under pressure, he completed 6-of-11 attempts for 49 yards and a score. There’s no doubt he’s seeing the field and reading defenses better than Luck, with a time to throw of just 2.28 seconds in those games. In comparison, Luck’s 2.87 seconds per throw is the fourth-longest amongst QBs that have played 50 percent of their team’s snaps.
Still, despite all Luck’s issues, the Colts remain the favorite in their absurdly weak division. If Luck is injured, he needs to sit, because he’s doing himself and the team no favors. Alternatively, if he’s healthy, he needs to break out his funk quickly, or the Colts will be watching at home come January.