INDIANAPOLIS – The locker room at the Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center very much looked like a room in transition on Monday.
Packing boxes were strewn about, and the contents previously in lockers largely were gone by 1:00 p.m.
It was a time of change and the activity in the room had nothing to do with preparing to meet Denver on Saturday.
It is a harsh feeling when the off-season is ushered in. It leaves players with a number of questions to answer once the tunnel-vision football routine is snapped.
“I don’t know (laughs). Honestly, I haven’t given it an ounce of thought,” said Luck when asked where home is now. “I’ve really enjoyed living here through the season. It’ll be something I will have to figure out.”
Where he had been at home since graduation was the locker room, in the cocoon of football and as a key figure in the club’s huddle and offense.
Like Peyton Manning in 1998, Luck took every offensive snap as a rookie and like his predecessor, Luck starred.
He set the NFL rookie record with 4,374 passing yards and produced as many (seven) fourth-quarter or overtime victories as any quarterback has done at least since 1970, and perhaps in the NFL’s 90-plus seasons.
Luck entered the NFL as one of the most prepared collegians and though his production was very good, he believes there are areas on which to improve.
“I think I’ll take this week to sort of figure it out more. I don’t think I’ve had enough time to really digest a lot of things,” said Luck. “I think just improving accuracy, footwork, making the different throws.
“I think I have a feel for how fast things occur, how our different guys get out of breaks, depths of routes, things of that nature. Just building up more rapport with the receivers, the tight ends and running backs.”
Like other teammates, Luck has not processed completely the loss at Baltimore, and it will be a sting that lasts a while.
“I don’t think (I’m) over the loss Sunday,” said Luck. “I guess it’s nice to have been to the playoffs and done that. (I’m) not bitter, but not over the loss completely. Hopefully, (I’ll) get over the loss soon.”
Luck was told by veterans to rest, though he said a few days of that will get old quickly. He said he would catch “bits and pieces” of the playoffs and like many players, he sounded like he needed a bit of time away from the action.
He did reflect on the contributions of teammates, particularly his fellow rookies and his most frequent target,
“I think it was a great rookie class to be a part of. Hopefully, we can continue to grow and get better,” said Luck. “Talking to
“Hopefully, we’ll continue on that upward trend. I’m thankful to have Reggie Wayne be around and helping us out. I think as a class, we’ll continue to get better. Hopefully, it will show on the field.”
Left with the nagging feeling of a season halted, Luck believes his off-season process will be about improving.
“Absolutely, I think you have to. Every off-season you have to get better,” said Luck. “You realize, too, that rest is a big part of that, making sure you’re ready to go when OTAs start and you are full-go. It’ll be paramount to get better this off-season.”