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The Early Lead
Posted at 02:18 PM ET, 09/17/2012

Andrew Luck has “winning blood in his veins”


Andrew Luck displayed the traits that made him the No. 1 pick in Sunday’s win. (Andy Lyons - Getty Images)
During the final frantic seconds of Sunday’s Colts-Vikings game, rookie quarterback Andrew Luck looked as cool and calm leading the Indy offense down the field as his predecessor.

When Adam Vinatieri’s 53-yard field goal with 12 seconds left sealed a 23-20 win, Luck achieved a positively-Manning-ian feat.

Luck became the first rookie quarterback to lead a game-winning drive in the final minute of a fourth quarter since Manning... Archie Manning, as the NFL’s Randall Liu pointed out.

The win was the first of the season for Indianapolis, and the first in the career of both Luck and first-year head coach Chuck Pagano.

But it was Luck’s poise when the Colts got the ball back with 31 seconds left and the game tied that should have Indy fans feeling good about their No. 1 overall pick after a tumultuous Week 1 performance.

The 23-year-old evaded the Vikings’ pass rush to complete consecutive 20-yard passes to Donnie Avery and Reggie Wayne in a span of just 13 seconds, and then drew Minnesota offside to put the Colts in field goal range.

In a Week 1 loss at Chicago, Luck’s stat line — 23 of 45, 309 yards, TD, 3 INTs, fumble — left plenty to be desired. But it closely mirrored Peyton Manning’s first career start.

Sunday’s showing bodes well for the rest of the season and beyond, and teammates are taking notice.

Wayne — who spent the last 11 years catching passes from Peyton Manning — put it simply after the game: “Kid’s got poise. Got some winning blood in his veins.”

Indianapolis Star columnist Bob Kravitz was also impressed.

“We just bore witness to Luck’s first signature moment,” he wrote in his post-game piece. “There will be plenty more to come.”

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Andrew Luck’s Colts debut eerily similar to Peyton Manning’s first start

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By  |  02:18 PM ET, 09/17/2012

 
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