Chuck Pagano: Andrew Luck’s done great, but he’s running too much

Getty Images

Colts quarterback Andrew Luck continued a strong preseason on Saturday with 164 yards and two touchdowns against the Browns, raising expectations that his sophomore season will be at least as good as his excellent rookie campaign.

The old saying goes that nobody’s perfect, however, and that’s true of Luck as well. He admitted after running four times for 20 yards during the game that he doesn’t know how to slide well at the end of a run, which opens up the door for a possible injury. That possibility is the sort of thing that worries coach Chuck Pagano, so he’d like to see his quarterback doing more throwing and less running even if he’s able to see the upside of Luck’s ability to make plays with his feet when the pressure is on.

“The only thing is, he’s running way too much. I know that,” Pagano said while also praising Luck’s command of the offense, via Bob Kravitz of the Indianapolis Star. “We’ve got to do a better job of keeping him clear. But that’s another dimension that people have got to contend, the ability to extend plays and create.”

Left tackle Anthony Castonzo left early with a sprained knee on Saturday and any extended absence there would make it harder to keep Luck, who was sacked once against the Browns and once in the first two preseason games after going down 41 times last year, clear of trouble in the pocket. The Colts signed tackle Gosder Cherlius and guard Donald Thomas in hopes of better protecting Luck and the departure of Bruce Arians as offensive coordinator should leave Luck exposed a little less often, but Pagano’s words make it clear that it’s a work in progress.

While they’re working at it, it might be worth getting Luck some remedial sliding work as well.