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Andrew Luck and Bjoern Werner Engage in World Cup Banter

Intro: Andrew Luck’s soccer fandom has brought a little smack talk into the Colts locker room. Earlier this year, Luck expanded on his affinity for fútbol on the Men in Blazers Grantland podcast.


INDIANAPOLIS – Hardly anyone in the Colts locker room can carry a conversation in Bjoern Werner's native tongue than Andrew Luck.

As a youth, Luck called Germany home and those years spent in Europe exposed him to the sport he follows will great fervor.

The game of fútbol garners Luck’s attention and with 2014 being a World Cup year, the topic has heated up in the Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center.

"We've been talking a lot of smack about the World Cup draw," Luck said of his conversations with Werner. "The group of death…Germany and America will get through that."

It's locker talk like that which keeps a loose environment around the Colts.

"I think people would be surprised how engaged a locker room is…in a lot of sports, soccer, basketball," Luck said on Grantland. "Obviously, you've got the big four in America---(football), hockey, basketball and baseball (but) there's a lot of soccer fans."

Luck's own soccer "career" came to a close a few years back as an intramural athlete at Stanford.

When asked how he would describe himself on the pitch, Luck strayed away from any major compliments. He called himself "a hustler with absolutely zero technical ability."

Any technical ability now for Luck comes via a controller, playing FIFA on Xbox LIVE.

He is pleased though to see how soccer is continuing to grow in the United States, especially among the younger age groups.

"I definitely think there's an appetite for it. I think this country is a great sports country as it is. It can sustain hockey, football, basketball and baseball so why not soccer?"

Luck's father, Oliver, was named President of Major League Soccer's Houston Dynamo in 2005, a team that Luck considers his favorite today.

"Growing up, I didn't pay attention to (the MLS) quite as much but as I got older I became much more interested in the league as a whole," Luck says.

"Being here now, it's fun to see the league grow. I think it's great for the sport in this country and hopefully we can keep this upward trend going and keep the quality up."

The podcast that Luck appeared on to discuss his love for soccer came a few days after ushering a second-half comeback in his hometown of Houston last season.

Similar to a stonewall goalkeeper in soccer, the ability to have a signal caller with Luck's pedigree gives the Colts a luxury that nearly every team in the NFL covets.

"All you got to do is look at the playoffs. Quarterback play is a huge, huge part of winning playoff games," Colts General Manager Ryan Grigson said at this year's Combine.

"We're very fortunate and blessed to have Andrew Luck and what he brings to the table. If you have a great quarterback, it just helps in your overall confidence of the team offense, defense and special teams. It's a nice luxury to have a talent like Andrew Luck."

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