Before Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck decided to eschew the NFL draft, he spoke with another quarterback who surprised people by returning to school when he could have entered the NFL draft and gone No. 1 overall: Peyton Manning.
Andrew’s father, Oliver Luck, was an NFL teammate of Peyton’s dad, Archie Manning. And Oliver told KTAR that their longtime friendship gave Andrew access to Peyton, who told Andrew about his own experience of returning to Tennessee for his senior season in 1997, when he likely would have been the first pick in the draft if he had left school following his junior year.
“Before he made his decision he had a couple of long conversations with Peyton,” Oliver Luck said. “Archie and I played together way back when with the old Houston Oilers, so we’ve known the family, and Peyton’s kind of acted like a mentor to Andrew. So he got advice not just from his old man and his mom, but
some people like Peyton Manning, Eli and others who have gone through it.”
Although Peyton Manning may have just become the NFL’s least popular player among Carolina Panthers fans, it makes sense that the Manning brothers would both advise Luck that things tend to turn out pretty well for highly regarded quarterbacks who decide not to enter the NFL draft early. Luck clearly made a well-informed decision when he chose to put the NFL millions on hold for another year.