Tag:Andrew Luck
Posted on: December 14, 2011 9:19 pm
 

If Colts go 0-16, Jim Caldwell's likely fired

Hardly shocking, we know, but 0-16 could mean curtains for Jim Caldwell in Indy. (US PRESSWIRE)

By Ryan Wilson

In the immortal words of Joe Theismann, you don't have to be Norman Einstein to know that Colts head coach Jim Caldwell isn't long for Indianapolis. Never mind that he was hand-picked by Tony Dungy, he's 24-8 in his previous two seasons, including a Super Bowl appearance in 2009.

The reality is this: Indianapolis is 0-13 and there's a reasonable expectation that by the time it's over, they'll be 0-16. Not having Peyton Manning has almost everything to do with the Colts' predicament. And that only makes things worse for Caldwell; if Indy's success hinges on Manning's health -- not Caldwell's ability to coach without one of his best players -- why keep him around?

Which is why, barring a miracle only Tim Tebow could deliver, Caldwell will be looking for work on or about January 1.

During his weekly Monday night radio show, team president Bill Polian admitted that, "I bear a lot of responsibility for what happened here and it weights heavily on me. It breaks my heart that there are good players and good coaches who are going through an awful time because we didn't build a strong enough football team."

But he also hinted that, ultimately, Caldwell could be held responsible.

"My fervent hope is that Jim's job is not in jeopardy because my fervent hope is that we don't go 0-16," he said, according to CBSSports.com Rapid Reporter Tom James. "And we're doing everything we can to try and avoid that."

On Wednesday, NFL Network's Jason La Canfora pretty much confirmed through sources what Polian intimated Monday. "…Unequivocally, an 0-16 finish by the Colts will cost Caldwell his job."

The possible follow-up question from some Colts fans: "Hey, Bill, what about you and (your son, Colts general manager) Chris?"

After all, a series of poor personnel decisions played a non-trivial role in Indy's current plight. (Forget Polian's recent admission that "we were getting ready to draft" T.J. Yates -- just take a look at the team's first-round picks from '05 to '10.)

A month ago, back when Indy was just 0-8, owner Jim Irsay said this about the Polian's future.

“I’m committed. In [the Polian's] defense, it’s pretty radical after the successes we’ve had to start even talking about the question, in my opinion. If this is five or six years or losing; you’re talking about eight weeks. The great things we’ve done, there has been a tilted sort of perception when you win so much that it’s disappointing."

Irsay was less certain about Caldwell.

“When it comes to changes and Jim’s status and that sort of thing, it’s something that eight games going forward, more will be revealed," the Colts owner said on November 4, according to the Indianapolis Star. "This situation is always changing. But it’s really going to be always what’s best to give us a chance to win. I don’t have any predictions or any votes of confidence or anything like that. I don’t have any non-votes of confidence. At this point, continuity is a good thing if it makes sense in terms of winning.”

Let's see: the Colts are 0-13 and their starting quarterback is Dan Orlovsky, the guy who was 0-7 as a starter with the Lions in 2008 (that team went 0-16), and is currently 0-2 in that role in Indy. Pretty sure continuity would be a bad thing. And who knows, when the Colts draft Andrew Luck, that thinking could extend to Manning, too.

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Posted on: December 13, 2011 5:52 pm
Edited on: December 13, 2011 6:07 pm
 

Polian: Colts 'were getting ready to draft' Yates

By Will Brinson

T.J. Yates didn't save the Texans season, but Sunday's come-from-behind win made it pretty clear that they've got a better chance at making a Super Bowl run with him under center than a lot of other players.

Like, say, Dan Orlovsky or Curtis Painter, the two guys currently swapping starts for the Colts because, according to Bill Polian by way of our Colts Rapid Reporter Tom James, Indy just missed on drafting Yates in the fifth round.

"We were getting ready to draft him in the very same round,” Polian said on his Monday radio show. "Houston picked before us if Im not mistaken.

"Should we have taken him a round earlier? Yes, without question."

One problem: the Colts didn't have a pick in the fifth round, so it's fairly unlikely they were about to take Yates at that spot. In fact, they traded their fifth-round pick to the Redskins who later traded the pick to ... the Texans.

Yes, that's right -- Yates was taken 152nd overall, which was originally the Colts fifth-round choice. Indy dealt the pick away along with the 53rd overall pick (their second-rounder) in order to move up four spots and grab Villanova tackle Ben Ijalana with the 49th overall pick. Ijalana hasn't played since Week 4.


Polian's second piece of logic remains the same, though: if the Colts thought highly of Yates, then they should have taken him late in the fourth round. Of course, hindsight and draft opinions are almost always through the gaze of 20/20 vision.

Polian essentially admitted as much by pointing out, via Brad Wells of Blue Stampede, that the Colts would have used a first-round pick on a quarterback in 2010 if they'd known that Peyton Manning would miss the entire season prior to the draft.

Polian didn't say which quarterback, but it's widely believed that he was interested in selecting Andy Dalton, now with the Bengals. Traveling back in a time machine and drafting Dalton or Yates probably wouldn't matter much for Indy; without Manning, they're pretty clearly doomed to mediocrity. (Polian also said, per Wells, that he made "poor judgment" on believing Curtis Painter was a capable backup.)

The only thing that matters is whether or not Polian and the Colts front office are smart enough to recognize their predicament now and address it the next time they have an opportunity to take a quarterback in the draft. Or as you might know it, with Andrew Luck and the first selection in 2012.

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Posted on: December 11, 2011 1:01 pm
Edited on: December 11, 2011 1:14 pm
 

Casserly: No 'scenario where Manning is traded'

By Will Brinson

It's widely believed that the Colts will land the No. 1 pick in the 2012 NFL Draft and use that selection to grab Stanford's Andrew Luck, who's all but said he's leaving school.

The bigger question is what the Colts will do with incumbent franchise quarterback Peyton Manning, who's likely done for the year, but due $28 million in early March.

CBS Sports Charley Casserly reported on Sunday that Manning's rehab is progressing, the Colts could potentially seek an extension on the deadline for that expensive option, and that he "doesn't see a scenario" where the Colts deal Manning elsewhere.

"This past week he was jogging on a treadmill and doing some light throwing," Casserly said on The NFL Today. "The Colts have not lost hope that they can get him back on the practice field before the season but there's no guarantee of that.

"If he's healthy in March, I expect them to pay him the $28 million they owe him and extend his contract by four years. If he's not healthy, I think what the Colts will look to do is ask for an extension of that deadline to pay the bonus with the hope that he will be more healthy later on to do it.

"Finally, I don't see any scenario where Peyton Manning is traded."


If Manning's willing to renegotiate the deadline for the payment based on his health, the Colts could end up with the best of both worlds, as they'd be able to properly evaluate Manning's health closer to the point at which they'd need to draft Luck.

Additionally, the Colts would have the option of exploring draft-day trade possibilities with other teams that might want to pay the hefty bounty required to obtain that top pick.

Regardless of how things play out, "the Manning decision" is a monumental, franchise-changing one, but the Colts ability to make a call will be greatly improved by their ability to further evaluate Manning's health without committing substantial financial resources to keeping him on the roster.

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Posted on: December 11, 2011 11:19 am
Edited on: December 11, 2011 12:34 pm
 

Do some NFL GMs prefer RG3 over Andrew Luck?

By Will Brinson

Robert Griffin, III, who won the Heisman on Saturday night, led Baylor to a 9-3 season that was filled with some incredible highlights, five straight wins to close the season and a rare second-straight bowl. And all along, "RG3" has seen his NFL stock rise, to the point that he's now considered the No. 11 overall player on Rob Rang's big board (and wearing Superman socks to the Heisman presentation).

And according to ESPN, Griffin's stock has gotten so cranked up that he's "preferred over Andrew Luck" by at least one NFL general manager. Adam Schefter reported that news Sunday, along with a few other quotes from general managers that include "sure-fire first-round pick" and "top-15 pick."

The latter two quotes aren't particularly news-y so to speak, as Griffin's been considered a lock for the first round for several months if he entered the draft, what with teams like the Colts, Dolphins, Redskins and Seahawks potentially drafting a quarterback in the first round.

Griffin has, as Rang noted recently, some "red flags," including injury, offensive system and his size.

"That said, Griffin is a better athlete than either Luck or [USC QB Matt] Barkley and is a better deep ball passer, too," Rang wrote this past week. "Those physical attributes, along with the poise he's demonstrated this season, could result in a top 10 pick should Griffin, a redshirt junior, choose to leave school early."


Who would you draft? Vote now on our Facebook page!

And it's entirely possible that Griffin could be a better NFL quarterback than Luck.

While the Baylor quarterback's stock has risen all season long, Luck's seen his value drop substantially (at least relative to the hype he was getting two months ago).

If Luck goes to the Colts with the No. 1 overall pick and they still keep Peyton Manning, there's a really good chance that people will believe Griffin was a better selection, because he'll get playing time first.

Much of it simply depends on where Griffin ends up. Judging by the opinions of most folks, wherever it is will be a team with a high pick in the 2012 NFL Draft.

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Posted on: December 8, 2011 3:00 pm
 

Irsay doesn't "envision Peyton playing' in 2011

By Will Brinson

This won't come as much of a surprise, but Colts owner Jim Irsay doesn't believe that Peyton Manning, sidelined for the entire season with a neck injury, will end up playing in 2011.

That's according to comments Irsay made to WRTV at a Super Bowl event in downtown Indianapolis recently, when he told the station that he "doesn't envision Peyton playing this season."

"These things take time. The best doctors can't predict. People often think someone knows for sure, and the answer is only time will tell," Irsay told WRTV, via The Indianapolis Star. "He is doing everything he can to get back and is working as hard as he can."

Really, the biggest surprise when we learned about the serious nature of Manning's neck injury is that he wasn't placed in Injured Reserve when the season began, in order for the Colts to add another body to the team.

Irsay's spent the season, however, sending out tweets about Manning's season not quite being done. And Manning himself told The NFL Today recently that he's cleared to throw, but not to practice.


The Colts have often been odd about their IR decisions, however, and putting Manning down for the year before the year really began wouldn't do wonders for ticket sales. (Not that 0-12 is helping matters.)

Lest you missed it, there's been quite the controversy this week about whether or not Manning and likely to be drafted quarterback Andrew Luck can co-exist on the Indy roster.

Now the general direction of rumors and chatter indicate that Manning could be traded (we'll worry more about suitors when it comes time, but the Jets, 49ers and Redskins all stand out as possibilities) or cut. After all, as Archie Manning said, "It'll work itself out."

The crazy thing is that if, in fact, Manning is done for the season, it's entirely possible he's already played his last game in a Colts uniform.

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Posted on: December 8, 2011 12:31 pm
Edited on: December 8, 2011 3:47 pm
 

OK State WR Justin Blackmon NFL bound

By Will Brinson

Andrew Luck, CBSSports.com's No. 1 overall prospect in the draft, already said he's "absolutely" ready for the NFL and looks primed to enter the draft, regardless of how the Heisman Trophy ceremony plays out.

And another top prospect is NFL-bound as well: Justin Blackmon, the top-ranked wide receiver (and No. 7 overall prospect) on NFLDraftScout.com's big board, is a different story.

Blackmon told ESPN on Wednesday that he intends to declare for the draft following Oklahoma State's appearance against Stanford in the Fiesta Bowl.

"I'm pretty sure that it will be [my last game)," Blackmon said. "I think it's just time. It's that time to go. I came back last year to win a Big 12 championship, set us up for a BCS bowl and I think we did that."

Blackmon's decision, provided the Rams continue their spiral back into putridity, is probably a good one. Both St. Louis and Cleveland (as my colleague Ryan Wilson noted last night) look like teams with high picks that need a playmaker at wide receiver.

In Rang's latest mock draft, Blackmon's currently slated to go off the board No. 2 overall to St. Louis.

It's scary that we're already at the point of the season (Week 14 and beyond) where the NFL Draft starts to come into focus, because that means the actual football season is wrapping up. But we're here, and we're starting to get some idea of what prospects will be leaving college football to make their way into the pros.

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Posted on: December 8, 2011 9:17 am
 

Pick-Six Podcast: George Atallah + Thurs Preview

By Will Brinson & Ryan Wilson

Despite there being no lockout, the NFLPA's been under fire for a number of issues (a lack of HGH testing, the suspensions of some Redskins, Cedric Benson) and union spokesman George Atallah was kind enough to join the show in break down where the union stands on those issues.

We also discuss in depth some of the issues surrounding HGH testing and whether or not it's a viable option for 2011.

Then Ryan and Will break down the Thursday night matchup between Pittsburgh and Cleveland, wondering if the Browns have any shot at all to upset the Steelers and if the trade that gave Atlanta Julio Jones (and the Browns Greg Little) is already a bust for Cleveland, and if Pittsburgh is the best team in the AFC.

The guys also break down Archie Manning's latest comments about Peyton and Andrew Luck and how they relate to the Colts future.

Did we mention that you should subscribe to the podcast via iTunes?

If you can't listen to the podcast below, download it here. And if you'd like to keep working while listening in your browser, pop that puppy out in a new tab here.



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Posted on: December 7, 2011 5:25 pm
Edited on: December 8, 2011 1:37 am
 

Archie Manning: Luck, Peyton could work together

By Will Brinson

Archie Manning's on a media tour for the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award these days and over the past 48 hours, he's probably been asked about Peyton Manning's future no less than 50 times, particularly as it relates to the strong possibility of the Colts drafting Andrew Luck.

One such time was Tuesday morning, when I spoke with Archie about the future of his oldest son with Indy.

"Well, you know, we'll just kind of have to see how that all plays out," Archie told CBSSports.com. "I think so much as far as what happens with Peyton will be about his health. And with the Colts, certainly understanding they're having a tough year and they'll have a high pick. I think Andrew Luck is a great prospect, somebody you can bring into your team and be a franchise quarterback and have a long career so you gotta to appreciate what the Colts are going through.

"It'll all work out. It'll all work out, seeing how they finish the season, seeing how they do, seeing how Peyton's health is, it'll shake out and be fine."


Archie later stated that he didn't "think [having Luck and Peyton on the same roster] would necessarily be a great fit for either one," a comment that drew plenty of skepticism about Peyton's future with the Colts. (And, perhaps, a text message or two from Peyton to his pops.)

The elder Manning clarified those remarks on ESPN radio Wednesday morning, when asked why he didn't believe the two could co-exist.

"I'm sure they could," Archie said Wednesday. "Andrew is a great young man and we've enjoyed getting to know him. He and Peyton have a friendship, and I'm one of the few people out there that's not really concerned about this deal. All good people respect each other and I'm sure this will all shake out."

The reality of Archie's comment that drew skepticism is probably this: he believes Peyton can play a few more years, and he believes Luck, as he told me, can step right in and be a franchise quarterback.

Keeping both guys on the same roster isn't just difficult from a financial perspective (though it's certainly possible), it's difficult from a football perspective, because it means limiting the number of years in which Luck can receive on-field training as a starting quarterback.

And it's precisely why the Colts are likely to have a difficult decision in the coming months.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com