|Andrew Luck won the first game of his career with a 23-20 win over the Vikings on Sunday. (US Presswire)|
How good has Andrew Luck been in his first two games, considering he's the first rookie quarterback since Archie Manning to lead his team to a comeback win in the final minute when he guided the Colts to victory over Minnesota on Sunday?
He's been pretty good, especially when compared to some of his counterparts, according to a list compiled by the Indianapolis Star.
Luck’s three TD passes through two games are more than Peyton Manning (2), Eli Manning (2), Matthew Stafford (1), Troy Aikman (1), Alex Smith (0) and JaMarcus Russell (0) tossed in their first two starts as rookies.
"It's just amazing that the guy's able to go out there and do the things he does as a rookie," Colts coach Chuck Pagano told the Associated Press after the 23-20 win over the Vikings.
Ben Roethlisberger, Cam Newton, Robert Griffin III and Sam Bradford also had three scoring passes through their first two games.
But where Luck separated himself is with his 530 passing yards. Newton had 834 through his first two rookie starts, but Luck, who has thrown three interceptions, is ahead of the rest in yardage and better than most in INTs. Peyton Manning had 490 (with 6 INTs), Aikman (421 yards, 4 INTs), Bradford (420 yards, 4 INTs), Stafford (357 yards, 5 INTs), Roethlisberger (339 yards, 3 INTs) and Eli Manning (228 yards, 2 INTs).
Ryan Leaf led the Chargers to wins in his first two starts as a rookie in 1998, but the Colts’ 1-1 record under Luck matches the starts put up by Roethlisberger, Russell, Griffin III and Ryan Tannehill. Aikman, Newton, Peyton and Eli Manning, Stafford and Bradford each lost their first two starts.
However, the 1998 Chargers finished 5-11, and of the aforementioned quarterbacks, only Roethlisberger’s rookie season ended in the playoffs.
This week, Luck could face another quarterback who also has high expectations after being drafted early in the first round: Jacksonville’s Blaine Gabbert, whose availability is uncertain after he injured his left hamstring during a loss to Houston on Sunday.
Gabbert, who was taken 10th overall in 2011, went 4-10 as a starter last year, throwing 2,162 yards with 12 touchdowns against 11 interceptions.
McGlynn is the center of attention: Right guard Mike McGlynn was forced to move to center after Samson Satele suffered an injury in the second quarter and did not return in his team’s 23-20 win over the Vikings.
Satele praised McGlynn’s play, but McGlynn was more critical, considering some of his snaps were low.
“That’s just something I have to pay attention to, go back and look, ‘Hey, that was a low snap,’ and get my rhythm snapping the ball,” McGlynn told the Indianapolis Star. “That’s something I'll work on.”
McGlynn’s position was filled by Trai Essex, who was signed earlier in the week.
“They called my number -- it’s time to go in and play,” Essex told the newspaper. That just comes with a lot of experience, me having to do that so many times before. “Mike did a hell of a job. I know that transition is tough, going from guard to having the ball in your hand. I did that last year and had never snapped a ball before in my life. It was crazy.”
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