2017 NFL Draft

Colts GM Grigson announces Luck will be the first pick

Colts GM Grigson announces Luck will be the first pick

By Rob Rang | The Sports Xchange/CBSSports.com
Erasing whatever suspense may have remained as to who the Indianapolis Colts' favored with the first pick of the 2012 NFL draft, general manager Ryan Grigson announced Tuesday that the team's choice Thursday will indeed be Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck.

"In fairness to him, in the whole process and the media gauntlet he's going to be enduring over the next couple days, I thought it was the right thing to do to announce we're going to take him," Grigson said. "I didn't see the point in prolonging what the world already knew. It's about Andrew. We wanted to do the right thing by him."

The news comes as no surprise. Frankly, once it became clear that Peyton Manning might miss the entire season, I wondered if the Colts' season wouldn't fall apart and that they'd find themselves in position to take Luck... and that was on September 7.

Since finishing the season with the league's worst record, not only has Luck consistently been projected by each of CBS and NFLDraftScout.com's analysts as the No. 1 overall pick, he's earned glowing recommendations from the likes of respected quarterback guru George Whitfield and Warren Moon. Each, remember, correctly forecasted Cam Newton's spectacular rookie season a year ago.

Luck, who Carolina Panthers' owner Jerry Richardson reportedly personally called to try to prod him into leaving school following the 2010 season, would have been the top pick a year ago over Newton. Ironically enough, he is largely viewed as the most pro-ready quarterback prospect since Manning, and as such, has been rated as NFLDraftScout.com's top prospect for nearly two years. He earned the highest grade I've given a quarterback since I began scouting professionally in 2001. I was personally on hand to watch the 6-4, 234 pound Luck's impressive Pro Day performance. Despite gusty conditions, an impressive effort only solidified Luck's grade.

Luck has often been compared to Manning due to their uncommon ability to read defenses at the line of scrimmage, durability, and ball placement. And unlike Manning, who at his best offered only marginal overall athleticism, Luck can hurt defenses with his feet, as well.

While Luck will be the first pick, he and the Colts have not yet come to a contractual agreement. Furthermore, according to Albert Breer of NFL.com, Luck will not be able to participate in much of the Colts' organized team activities until he graduates on June 17, per NFL guidelines on underclassmen.
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