Blog Entry

Simms thinks Luck doesn't have an NFL arm

Posted on: November 2, 2011 5:44 pm
LuckPosted by Josh Katzowitz

People just can’t stop praising Andrew Luck.

Even if he throws a pick-6, people come back and say, “Just look at the way he responded after that interception. What a champion.” Hell, we talked plenty about Luck -- and if we’d rather have him or Cam Newton if we were starting a new franchise -- on today's experts chat.

You have to look high and low to find anybody that has anything negative to say about Luck and his NFL prospects.

Luckily, former Giants star quarterback and current CBS/Showtime analyst Phil Simms has come to our rescue. He told SiriusXM radio that he has detected a flaw in Luck’s body of work.

“I,” he said, “just don’t see big time NFL throws.”

More transcription from PFT: “I’ve watched a lot of him. He never takes it and rips it in there. And you can say what you want but, man, you’ve got to be able to crease that ball every once in a while. …  There’s not a lot of rotation on the ball and there’s not a tremendous amount of power.  Not that you need to have that power arm. I’m not saying you’ve got to have that exclusively but, man, it sure helps when you can do that because there’s four or five plays a game it is about arm strength. And sometimes quarterbacks who don’t have it, they pass those plays up. Why? Well, they go, ‘I don’t know if I can make that throw,’ so they throw it short.”

One NFL scout, talking to's Rob Rang agrees. Said that scout: "The reality is, Luck is a pretty special talent, but he's not Superman. I don't know that anyone could be as good as the hype he's getting right now."

You have to wonder how long the light emanating off Luck’s crown will continue to shine. Hardly anybody has a bad thing to say about him, and people are wondering how many draft picks he could command if the team that’s selecting with the No. 1 pick in 2012 decides to trade his rights – four first-rounders was the craziest hypothesis I saw.

But positive or negative, the Luck storyline will last for a very long time, through the Heisman presentation to the draft and all the way through training camp and into the 2012 season. That’s a long time for speculation about whether a quarterback can be a franchise savior. That’s also a long time for other people to pick at Luck and find his flaws. Whether they’re imagined or not.

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Since: Mar 18, 2009
Posted on: November 4, 2011 10:20 am

Simms thinks Luck doesn't have an NFL arm

Two words.....Jeff George.

There is more to being an NFL QB than arm strength. 

Since: Oct 27, 2011
Posted on: November 3, 2011 5:59 pm

Simms thinks Luck doesn't have an NFL arm

As a die hard Cowboy fan, I need to cite only one player who didn't have an NFL-calibre arm:  Joe Montana and Joe muddled through a fairly successful career.

Since: Jul 26, 2009
Posted on: November 3, 2011 4:46 pm

Simms thinks Luck doesn't have an NFL arm

Phill\ Simms is the last person to talk about arm strength. He was Mr. underthrow before the underthrow was in style in the NFL. 

Since: Jan 4, 2007
Posted on: November 3, 2011 4:25 pm

Simms thinks Luck doesn't have an NFL arm

Major Applewhite had a stronger arm than Phil Simms and Chris Simms.

Since: Feb 23, 2010
Posted on: November 3, 2011 3:41 pm

Simms thinks Luck doesn't have an NFL arm

Oh don't go there Phil! And what about your son Chris Simms, what was he? UT didn't help him excel in the NFL. Andrew Luck will just fine who ever picks him up Colts or Dolphins the way the season is going. Simms is salty his boy's career didn't pan out and win a Super Bowl & as for his announcing, that's why I turn the sound down and listen to the guys on Westwood One. Colts should work on trading Peyton & Reggie for a high quality RB, use other draft picks to pick up OL and Def personnel. Pollian wants to win or go to be terrible before Peyton arrived??

Since: Dec 2, 2007
Posted on: November 3, 2011 3:39 pm

Simms thinks Luck doesn't have an NFL arm

Simms may be right (I think he is)... But in a West Coast style offense, Luck could be absolutely deadly.  Because he's accurate, and he has quick, and great, footwork.  NFL CB's have great closing speed, and any mistake is quickly made up for (which favors a strong, fast throw), but with the right skills and instincts, that can be taken advantage of by a smart QB...  He can move the defense with his progressions and create open men on the backside.  Peyton Manning's more recent years could be a good analogy-- he lost some of the strength of his passes, but he may have actually been a BETTER QB the past 3 or 4 years, as far as effective leadership and execution of that offense (ask Painter HIS opinion of Peyton's abilities right about now).

And ironically enough, there's a VERY STRONG likelihood he may be mentored by Peyton Manning over the next 2-3 years of his career, the way things are going.  Luck will be more than adequate in the NFL, he has the skills to succeed at that level-- good instincts, good mechanics, and accuracy.  In a perfect (selfish) world, for me, he ends up in Seattle next season (although I'm not sure Pete Carroll would ever draft Jim Harbaugh's golden boy).

Since: Mar 8, 2008
Posted on: November 3, 2011 3:24 pm

Simms thinks Luck doesn't have an NFL arm

Luck does not seem to have an especially strong arm by NFL standards. However, his arm does appear to be more than adequate. Impressive arm strength is obviously nice to have, but as many have said here, it is not a requirement to be successful. It is only one of many attributes needed, and not the most important one.   

Since: Oct 18, 2007
Posted on: November 3, 2011 2:09 pm

Simms thinks Luck doesn't have an NFL arm

Phil Simms also is probably one of the worst broadcasters around.

Since: Oct 1, 2006
Posted on: November 3, 2011 1:59 pm

Simms thinks Luck doesn't have an NFL arm

I don't recall Joe Montana having the greatest arm strength.  Montana was just one of the greatest QB's of all time and probably the greatest collegiate/NFL QB of all time as he performed great on both levels winning a National Title at Notre Dame and multiple Super Bowls with the Niners.

Since: Oct 1, 2006
Posted on: November 3, 2011 1:56 pm

Simms thinks Luck doesn't have an NFL arm

Phil Simms has not watched enough of Andrew Luck.  I have seen Luck throw the deep ball and I have seen him zip throws across the field and have seen him thread the needle between defenders.  Luck is the real deal.  Is he as good as Cam Newton?  Right now of course not as Luck is not established playing against the best competition (NFL).  Regardless of whether Luck makes it in the NFL or not he made the right decision.  The degree from Stanford plus potential Heisman winning QB goes a long way in the young man's career giving him more than the NFL option.

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