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Protecting The Ball In 2015 Has Andrew Luck's Full Attention

Intro: Outside of one practice at Anderson University, Andrew Luck has been flawless with his decision making through a week and a half of Training Camp. How important is ball security to Luck’s success in 2015?





INDIANAPOLIS – It doesn't sound like a relaxing, enjoyable day during your free time.

Waiting for Andrew Luck's viewing that day were 20 clips, all of which ended with the Colts quarterback retreating to the sideline questioning himself.

Clips are rewound time and time again, leaving the quarterback wondering what he could have done differently to stay on the field.

"We watch all the interceptions from the past year during the offseason. It's a terrible day," Luck says of the annual necessary evil.

"You see what you did wrong…tip ball, some you can't get control, but they're ones you can control, bad misses, bad mistakes, forcing the ball where it had no business going, just throwing it up on third-down, as opposed to throwing it out of bounds and letting the best punter in the league going out there and do his thing."

Once the misery is over, it's time to make sure next year's watching isn't as long.

"You learn from that and then you practice it, in OTAs, in mini-camp, in Training Camp and being very frugal and purposeful with that football," Luck says.

Through eight days on the practice field at the 2015 Training Camp, Luck's protection of the football is like a parent over a newborn.

When Luck has been quarterbacking the Colts offense, in 7-on-7 or 11-on-11 settings, the unit has been nearly flawless.

The results of Luck's care with the football come from an offseason goal list where turnovers were atop the list.

Luck spent part of his 2015 offseason back at Stanford where he experimented with a virtual reality lab, trying to get a better understanding for how to “counterpunch” defenses. The real footage for Luck provided another tool in an offseason all about limiting mistakes.

His head coach has seen some of the advances, necessary for the Colts to eliminate the friendly fire.

"Two years ago, we led the league in fewest turnovers and that's something that we need to get back to," Pagano said.

"We're going to make an emphasis in this Training Camp on making sure to know when the play is over, when the down is over, when to say when. Take some calculated risk at times, but again don't be greedy, don't make, as Andrew calls it, 'Those bonehead plays,' and try to limit those things."

In trying to tone down on some of the giveaways, Luck drills every day with Colts quarterbacks coach Clyde Christensen.

Since 2002, Christensen has watched Pro Bowl caliber quarterback play for the better part of the last decade as a Colts assistant.

Christensen knows there's a fine line in reining a player of Luck's caliber completely in.

"A guy like (Luck), tends to play every play like it's the last and you don't want to take that away from him, but you also don't want to put yourself in harms way in certain situations," Christensen says. "There are some situations where you take some chances and there are some you don't. We will continue to progress on that.

"The best thing about him is he keeps taking steps forward. He's always been really, really good at just doing that, inching forward, making progress. We don't need to be Johnny Unitas this year. We just need to be a better Andrew Luck and I think that's what he will keep doing."

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