NFL Draft 2012: Why Education Ensures Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III's Success

Ryan PhillipsContributor IIIFebruary 23, 2012

GLENDALE, AZ - JANUARY 02:  Andrew Luck #12 of the Stanford Cardinal prepares to snap the football during the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl against the Oklahoma State Cowboys on January 2, 2012 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Quarterback is arguably the most cerebral position in all of professional sports. There are so many things an NFL signal-caller must know, see and react to that only intelligent men can man the spot and be successful.

Both Robert Griffin III and Andrew Luck have been wildly successful in the classroom during their college careers, and that leads me to believe they can handle the stress that will come along with leading an NFL franchise. 

Luck and Griffin impress with their natural talent, athleticism and passing ability, but the thing that sets them apart from other prospects is what rests between their ears. 

While Griffin maintained a 3.67 GPA and eventually wants to attend law school, Luck was a three-time member of the Pac-10/12 All-Academic team and held a 3.48 GPA in architectural design. 

The fact that both guys were able to perform at such a high level in the classroom while playing Heisman Trophy-level football for BCS conference teams is simply remarkable. There is a reason both players are often referred to as "special."

In the NFL quarterbacks must be leaders. They have to remain dedicated to studying the team's playbook, game film and future opponents. Anyone who wants to play under center professionally and be successful must accept the extra work that has to be put into the job.

Griffin and Luck have both already shown that kind of dedication, and the natural intelligence each guy possesses leads me to believe they will both be successful at the next level. 

The top two quarterbacks in the 2012 NFL draft will each make an outstanding representative for whichever franchise selects him. And given what Luck and Griffin have achieved on and off the field in college, I have a hard time seeing either failing to live up to expectations.