The NFL playoffs are looming and with only two weeks left in the regular season, the brackets begin filling themselves out and predictions are made. While 12 teams battle it out to decide who will raise the Lombardi Trophy, there will be other stories developing underneath all the glitz and glamor of Super Bowl 46.
The biggest topic going into 2012 will most likely be the continuation of the Andrew Luck discussions, the aptly named "Suck for Luck" campaign. As possibly the best QB prospect to come out of college since the University of Tennessee gave us some guy named Peyton, in 1998, Luck was all but locked into the first overall pick in last year's draft.
However, he chose to stay in the Cardinal uniform for one more season, even though his exceptional coaching staff left for the NFL, and his prospects possibly look even better than they did at the end of last season.
So yes, it's pretty well in hand that Luck will (and should be) drafted first overall in the 2012 NFL Draft because he's an once-in-a-lifetime developmental project that has the tangibles and raw ability to start immediately if needed. It's obviously preferred if he lands with a team that can sit him for a couple years behind an established vet (i.e. Indianapolis Colts), but four years within a NFL-type system, Luck has the talent and skills that should allow him to play well coming out of the gate.
But one has to wonder, is that really a 100 percent, without a doubt situation? Andrew Luck definitely has over-the-top talent and is easily the most "NFL-ready" but does that term really matter anymore? With the success that Cam Newton has enjoyed with the Carolina Panthers, does a QB necessarily have to be "NFL-ready", especially with the transition to an NFL that heavily favors the passing game?
This isn't to say that Luck will fall on draft day but will another team feel compelled to dangle a savory trade in the faces of whoever ends up with the top pick? These are the three teams that are in the best position to end up with the first overall pick but there's only one that seriously needs to consider a QB.
Without droning on and on, there are some questions that are going to be answered after the Super Bowl is won and done. Much like the Heisman Award ceremony, maybe we're in for some surprises when it comes to draft day in April. Remember 2006, Reggie Bush was touted as the clear No. 1 pick and Houston spun the NFL on its proverbial head.