No Clear Winner in the Manning vs. Luck Debate and Other AFC South Must-Reads

Nate Dunlevy@NateDunlevyGuest ColumnistDecember 7, 2012

Everything is looking up for the Colts.
Everything is looking up for the Colts.Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Peyton Manning will likely win the MVP award.

Andrew Luck may be the most impressive rookie quarterback ever.

If one thing is clear, it's that there's no clear winner in the debate about what the Indianapolis Colts should have done last March.

Of course, don't tell that to Bob Kravitz of the Indianapolis Star, who spends his most recent column gloating about being right about the Luck-Manning decision.

Kravitz is right of course, because everyone knows Manning has spent the entire season hurt and never returned to his former glory.

Oh wait...

The fact is that the Colts had two viable roads last March. There was no way to screw up the choice between Luck and Manning. No matter what Jim Irsay had elected, the Colts would have a top-shelf quarterback.

The only possible mistake would have been to try to keep both.

Had the Colts kept Manning and dealt the rights to Luck to the Redskins, Indy would likely have nine or 10 wins, and fans would be enjoying the miracle that is Manning's recovery.

The chance to enjoy the end of Manning's career would have had extra value to fans of the Colts well beyond additional seasons of greatness by Luck.

As it is, the team has eight wins and a bright future.

The Colts could have happily dealt away Luck and drafted some other young quarterback later as insurance. Imagine Russell Wilson backing up Manning.

Kravitz was right. The Colts did the right thing.

Of course, if they had done the exact opposite of what he advocated, that would have been the right thing too.


General Interest

Scott Kacsmar of Cold Hard Football Facts profiles quarterbacks who protect the ball.

Kacsmar posts his Week 14 guide on Bleacher Report.

Aaron Schatz of the Football Outsiders posts a metric in which J.J. Watt and Jerrell Freeman do well.


Houston Texans

Paul Kuharsky of talks to Jon Gruden about the Texans-Pats game.

Rivers McCown of Battle Red Blog answers readers' questions.

John McClain of the Houston Chronicle relays that Andre Johnson thinks this is a big game for the Texans.

Dale Robertson of the Houston Chronicle says Johnathan Joseph is on track to play.


Indianapolis Colts

Jack Moore of Advanced NFL Stats has a must read-article about how impressive volume is for Luck.

Gabe Zaldivar of Bleacher Report says the cast of Parks and Recreation visited the Colts.

Cliff Brunt of the AP says the Colts are loaded with young talent.

Phil B. Wilson of the Indianapolis Star imagines if Bob Lame had finished the Lions game.

Mark Alesia and Phil Richards of the Indianapolis Star show the difference between All-22 film and broadcast.

Richards says fans need to take their eye off the ball to fully appreciate the game.


Tennessee Titans

The Sports Pickle has a funny name for the next Titans coach.

David Boclair of the City Paper says Kyle DeVan may finally get his chance.

John Glennon of the Tennessean compares Luck and Jake Locker in the clutch.

Jim Wyatt of the Tennessean says Chris Johnson wants more second-half touches.


Jacksonville Jaguars

Kuharsky has good numbers on Chad Henne versus the blitz.

Alfie Crow of Big Cat Country has film work on the Jaguars' defense.

Vito Stellino of the Florida Times-Union says the Jaguars have never had the top pick in the draft.

Ryan O'Halloran of the Florida Times-Union tracks changes on special teams.


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