Andrew Luck played only seven seasons in the NFL, and retired at the age of just 29 years old. Before retiring, Luck was viewed as one of the greatest quarterback prospects of all time when he came out of Stanford and entered the NFL draft in 2012. Entering the 2012 draft class, even with prospects like Robert Griffin III in the same class, Luck was viewed as more than a can’t-miss prospect, after earning a 97/100 draft grade and putting him in the same conversation as John Elway, Josh Allen, and Peyton Manning. Many considered Luck to be a generational quarterback talent that comes around once or twice a decade. Following injuries to an aging Peyton Manning, whom the Indianapolis Colts selected first overall in 1998, the Colts organization believed that Luck would be the next quarterback to fill the void until August 2019, following an Indianapolis Colts preseason game against the Chicago Bears, former 2012 first-overall pick Andrew announced his retirement.
At the time, Luck said in the groundbreaking press conference:
“I’ve been stuck in this process. I haven’t been able to live the life I want to live. It’s taken the joy out of this game. The only way forward for me is to remove myself from football. This is not an easy decision. It’s the hardest decision of my life. But it is the right decision for me.”
The press conference was more than NFL news, it was breaking news at the time. In the years following, Luck has stayed very quiet. There’s been little to no rumors of Luck coming out of retirement, and he has no social media presence.
Luck decided to break his silence in a rare sit-down interview with ESPN’s Seth Wickersham, where he helped to elaborate on some of the factors that lead to his early retirement from the NFL:
“To play quarterback, you’re not allowed to worry about anything except the task at hand,”
“And that seeps into other areas of life. It’s not the healthiest way to live.”
“He was not just a quarterback. In the offseason, he and Nicole had married, and she was pregnant with Lucy,”
“He had responsibilities and promises beyond himself and the Colts. He was coming close to saying out loud what he had disclosed only to Nicole and a few others: that he wasn’t sure he wanted to do this anymore. Not could. Wanted. He had proved that he could play at a high level. He had received plenty of praise and criticism, enough to know that neither of those things matters.”