To the shock of no one, the Indianapolis Colts took Andrew Luck with the No. 1 pick of the NFL draft. After years of having no one but Peyton Manning lead the team, Luck will be tasked with bringing the Colts back to Super Bowl-winning form.
The term "pro-ready" is misused with quarterbacks more often than it is misused with any other position. Any kid who takes the majority of snaps under center gets that designation, as do a lot of people who haven't played in pro-style offenses and just look the part. Andrew Luck is that rarest of all collegiate signal-callers -- he is actually pro-ready, and he's only going to get better. You've heard all the hype about the playbook acumen, the extraordinary discipline, the desire to get better and all that good stuff -- but to me, the most intriguing thing about Luck is that I don't believe he's hit his ceiling.
Luck didn't throw a lot of deep balls because that wasn't the way the offense was set up, and he didn't always have deep receivers. We've seen tons of quarterbacks come into the NFL, get a good look at a professional conditioning program, and see a major spike in their arm strength. Luck is already good enough to play in the pros, and he was probably good enough to do so the year before he became eligible for the NFL draft. In 2010, I compared him to the MVP-level version of Rich Gannon. When he got even better in 2011, I did something I've never done before -- compared him over and over to my second-favorite quarterback of all time (John Elway, another Stanford alum, still has the top spot).
To put it simply, Andrew Luck is an endangered American idea -- the overhyped entity who's actually as good as people say he is.