The Colts really, truly, honestly, “100 percent” believe Andrew Luck will play — and play well — this season. Jim Irsay intimated other teams called about trading for Luck, but the owner said the confidence the Colts have in the quarterback’s future kept them from even listening.
“Trust me, there were people that would have given an unprecedented amount of draft picks with a No. 1 behind them for him, and we wouldn’t even think of even drifting in that direction,” Irsay said, via video tweeted by Kevin Bowen of 1070 The Fan. “He’s our guy. We feel 100 percent confident he is going to come back and lead this football team with some of the new teammates he’s accumulated to great things.”
Irsay said the Colts proved their commitment to and faith in Luck by not addressing the quarterback position, instead focusing on building a better offensive line to protect him. The Colts drafted Notre Dame guard Quenton Nelson with the sixth overall choice and took Auburn guard Braden Smith with the 37th overall selection.
“If we had any doubts, we would have at least talked about the quarterback position from a backup standpoint and all those sorts of things,” Irsay said. “But we really don’t have any doubts.
“Again, until he goes out and does it, it’s going to be a matter of great interest and debate. That’s just the way it is. But I’m very confident having followed his rehab extremely close and seeing where he’s at, that he’s going to be good to go, ready to go, this season.”
Two teams are in particularly good shape for next year’s draft: The Packers, who got the Saints’ 2019 first-round pick, and the Patriots, who got the Bears’ 2019 second-round pick and the Lions’ 2019 third-round pick.
The Packers are the only team in the NFL with two first-round picks in 2019, and that’s a great place to be in. Although the Saints are favored to be a playoff team, any time you can get an extra first-round pick, even a late first-round pick, it’s a big deal. And Packers fans can root for the Saints to fall short of expectations, and send a high first-round pick to Green Bay.
The Patriots are the only team with two extra picks in the first two days of the 2019 draft, and both of their extra picks come from teams likely to miss the playoffs.