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LUCK SURPASSES MARK AND LEADS COLTS TO PLAYOFFS
Thu, 27 Dec 2012 01:30 AM EST

The expectations placed on Andrew Luck just about seemed unfair.

Being the successor to Peyton Manning in Indianapolis Colts is heady stuff for a rookie taking the reins of a franchise that won 2 games last season.

The Colts quarterback continued to demonstrate that the passer rating statistic isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. The No. 1 overall pick of the 2012 NFL Draft completed less than 50 percent of his 35 pass attempts on Sunday, but didn’t turn the ball over as he threw for 205 yards and hit Reggie Wayne for what turned out to be a game-winning, 7-yard touchdown with under 5 minutes to play on Sunday. Basketball odds

With the 20-13 win over the Kansas City Chiefs, the Indianapolis Colts improved to 10-5 and secured a spot in the AFC playoffs. The Colts are at present the No. 5 seed and will likely have to wait another week to discover who their wild card opponent will be. When the Colts begin preparations for their Week 17 game against the Houston Texans, they’ll do so with head coach Chuck Pagano. Pagano will make his return after missing the last 3 months while under treatment for leukemia.

“Would we’ve done it without him?” Indianapolis Colts interim coach Bruce Arians asked. “No.”

The Colts have now won 10 or even more games and will appear in the playoffs for the 12th time in the last 14 seasons. A streak of 9 consecutive playoff appearances was snapped during the 2011 season when the club lost Peyton Manning to neck surgery. Their 2-14 record without Manning allowed the franchise to land the No. One overall pick and select Luck.

Through 15 games this season, Luck has finished 54.3 percent of his pass attempts and has 21 touchdowns against 18 interceptions, resulting in a passer rating of just 75.6. With 35 attempts on Sunday, Luck set an NFL rookie record with 599 pass attempts, breaking the previous mark of 590 set in 2010 by Sam Bradford of the St. Louis Rams. In the final minute of the 1st half on Sunday, Luck hit rookie T.Y. Hilton for a 23-yard gain that pushed him ahead of the previous rookie passing yardage mark (4,051) that was set last season by Panthers quarterback Cam Newton.

Even with the rookie passing records and leading his team to a playoff berth, Luck could finish 3rd in the NFL’s Offensive Rookie of the Year balloting. Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin, the No. 2 overall pick in the draft, has passed for 3,100 yards with 20 touchdowns and just 5 interceptions for a passer rating of 104.1, adding 752 yards and 6 touchdowns with his legs. Seattle Seahawks 3rd round quarterback Russell Wilson enters Sunday night’s action with 2,697 passing yards, 21 touchdowns (and 9 interceptions) with 402 yards and 3 touchdowns rushing for a team that might clinch a playoff spot and remain alive for an NFC West title with a win over the San Francisco 49ers Sunday night.


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