Andrew Luck Currently on Career High Pace for Punishment Withstood in Pocket
While much was done this offseason to improve the offensive line, Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck is currently on a career high pace for his most QB hits and sacks withstood in a season:
Throwing 2015 out of the equation–in which Luck missed 9 games, the 5th-year quarterback is currently projected to withstand 128 total QB hits and 60 total sacks at his current pace.
Through 4 games, the Colts have allowed the most sacks in the league with 15 total sacks and are tied for the 2nd most total QB Hits with 32 total QB hits allowed.
If multiplied by 4 (because of 4 games played and 16 games in a season), that would be 19 more sacks than his previous career high sacks of 41 in 2012, and 12 more total QB hits taken than his prior career high of 116 total QB Hits also endured in his rookie season.
Granted, the Colts did face a ferocious Denver Broncos pass rush in Week 2 led by Von Miller, and the offensive line was without two starters along the right side of their offensive line last weekend–forcing them to start two rookie backups.
Those two games could very well be anomalies from what occurs in their pass protection going forward–and thus, inflating such totals, but at the same time, what has happened so far, simply can’t going forward.
If I was auditing the Colts, this would definitely be a ‘going concern’ issue worth noting.
To be fair, I do believe that a fully healthy Colts offensive line is better than last season’s, as prized starting rookie center Ryan Kelly‘s arrival alone makes them improved in the interior.
However, once a stalwart starting left tackle, Anthony Castonzo‘s play has seemingly slipped on the left side, and aside from young star left guard, Jack Mewhort, there’s a lot of uncertainties along the offensive line beyond Kelly and him right now.
The Colts have to find a way to better protect Luck in pass protection, who endured a career high 6 sacks this past Sunday, as well as 13 Total QB Hits–looking more like a piñata than NFL passer.
Hopefully, both incumbent starters Joe Reitz and Denzelle Good are healthy enough to start this Sunday against the Chicago Bears because the Colts could sorely use their help.
The team simply can’t afford a repeat rookie performance of last weekend–where the majority of their offensive line had inexperienced rookie starters, who struggled.
Whatever the case may be, the Colts have to clean it up because keeping Luck healthy and upright remains of the utmost importance for turning their season around.