So Andrew Luck bucked the conventional wisdom and opted to return for another year at Stanford instead of cashing in as the likely No. 1 pick in the NFL Draft.
Apart from the Carolina Panthers, no one else should have a problem with this. Yet apparently radio talk show hosts, bloggers and columnists around the country have been ripping Luck for not getting out while the getting is good.
It’s one thing to voice an opinion that his is not the decision you would make, and maybe you can say it’s the wrong decision in the long run. The biggest arguments against are the fact that Jim Harbaugh very well may not be back to coach the Cardinal next year, Luck won’t have much of the offensive line that protected him this year, and the potential of a new NFL salary structure for rookies could mean he’s leaving tens of millions of dollars on the table.
You also get the horror stories of quarterbacks who went back for another year. Ask Jake Locker in May if he wishes he’d come out early. There’s Matt Leinart, or Jevan Snead — the list goes on.
That doesn’t even include players like Sam Bradford, though his can hardly be considered an unhappy ending since despite missing almost all his senior season he still went No. 1 overall in the draft and nearly led the St. Louis Rams to the playoffs.
His dad is a former NFL quarterback, so it’s not that Luck is speaking or making a decision due to a lack of experience. This honestly, genuinely seems to be what he wants. Who are any of us to deny him that, or ridicule him for not wanting someone to show him the money now?
When he finishes next year, one thing is guaranteed: He will have a degree in architecture from Stanford University. If that’s the worst thing that happens to him, I think he’ll still be OK. Just because many of us wish we could play football for a living doesn’t mean he has to right now.
…On the other hand, carpe diem.