The [Andrew] Luck Of The Draw

It seems as if both Marcy and Jim White (where has that guy been lately?) are harshing on me for some Trash Talk. So, off we go!

The Florida Gators seem to have won a football game. Over other Florida men, the crossfire Hurricanes. Of Miami. That was Mr. White’s concern.

Marcy wants me to talk about the Patrick Chung case. I will likely come back to that later, when there is more information available. Like departmental reports and search warrant affidavits (if there are any!). For the meantime, there are serious questions as to the propriety of the actions of the Belknap County, of New Hampshire, officials in entering Chung’s house, not to mention searching it without belief there was a suspect inside and ongoing crime being committed. It is, for now at least, hard to see how they could have thought that. We shall see, but there are some serious questions needing to be asked and answered on this one.

And, then, the Luck ran out. Of Indy. From the great Gregg Doyell of the IndyStar:

Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck announced Saturday night he was retiring, and for a moment he couldn’t breathe. He was crying. He was catching his breath and apologizing.

Luck was booed off the field Saturday night when the Colts played the Chicago Bears in the third preseason game, the news of his retirement breaking on Twitter during the second half. The fans who stuck around, they booed Luck off the field. And he heard it.

Even so, Luck sounded like a man at peace, a man who has stared into the abyss and turned away. Football, once his favorite hobby, the source of such childlike joy, had become his dark place. He said he had been thinking about retiring for about 10 days, calling it “a moment of clarity” when the idea finally started to take shape. He said he’d been tired.

“I feel exhausted,” he said, sounding very much that, “and quite tired.”

This is stunning. And it changes the AFC calculus dramatically. Good for Andrew Luck. He has always seemed like a cerebral chap, and if he thinks it is time to move on, then it is time to move on. That is truly gutsy though.

So, there are two musical selections today. The first is, in honor of Andrew Luck, The Luck Of The Draw by the incomparable Bonnie Raitt. Along with early (think Derek And The Dominoes era) Eric Clapton, and Lowell George of Little Feat, Bonnie is as kick ass of a slide guitar player as I have ever seen in my life. She is so good.

And, the second is the Stones. They are still Rolling.

And in just over 24 hours from now, Mrs. bmaz and I are going to be visiting with the Glimmer Twins, and the other Stones. Because if the Stones are in town, you go. And they are not some over the hill geriatric second level casino act, they still absolutely kill. The attached video is from 2006. A tour I saw, though here as opposed to at Copacabana Beach with half a million people in Rio. I wish I had flown down to Rio. Because, damn, that looked like some serious fun.

62 replies
  1. BobCon says:

    I can’t blame Luck — he basically had his fibula driven straight in to his uvula and his tibia sent though his clavicle during his career. Makes sense to walk away while he could. John Urschel is another interesting case — he quit after a few years when he decided the risks of brain damage were too high, and now he’s pursuing a PhD in mathematics at MIT.

    • bmaz says:

      I can’t blame him either. And Rugger is right about how crappy Luck’s O-Line has mostly been with the Colts.

    • Democritus says:



      *runs away whimpering* I saw a bit about his shoulder, but assumed head issues were also involved.

      I’m glad these players aren’t all sacrificing themselves.

  2. P J Evans says:

    Luck sounds like he decided it was time because he was tired of being injured and doing rehab. (He could have made a bunch more money if he’d kept playing, but that’s a road to being crippled sooner rather than later. Some team should hire him as a coach.)

    • Rugger9 says:

      LGM had a good discussion on this but I would agree Luck showed more sense than is usual for a Stanford guy to leave while he could still walk since it was clear that the Colts’ management team wasn’t going to give him a line to keep him vertical. I’ll be interested to see the Sports Curmudgeon’s take on this tomorrow.

      • Rugger9 says:

        It wasn’t as much as I expected it to be, but Barnwell over at ESPN had some perspective about why Luck is unusual here to hang them up. Richard Sherman was his teammate at Stanford and is understanding as well.

        What I found interesting in the first day or so about what the Colts are going to do is that no one mentioned Kaepernick as a possibility. Hmmmm…..

  3. Peterr says:

    Great musical choice, bmaz. Bonnie Raitt is truly amazing.

    Luck’s decision flies in the face of the “play through the pain” toxic masculinity that the NFL probably holds title to. That he said “Fk it” and decided to leave is the kind of decision that a bunch of other non-stars probably look at with envy. “If I had Luck’s money banked, I’d be right behind him.”

    It will be interesting to see if any other players decide to retire before getting another hit to the head, another broken bone, or another scrambled knee.

    • Eureka says:

      Seconded on the musical choices– love Bonnie Raitt, and the Stones are the Stones.

      Peterr– Carli Lloyd was out kicking fieldgoals the other day, which reminded me of your FG-kicking story:

      (Further recalling that story, I am reminded that I got my worst head smash playing soccer. What do you do when two heads are running full-speed at the ball, no one yields, and all meet?)

      Thank goodness Marcy and Jim have some pull around here, and Trash Talk is ~baAack.~ Hope you and Mrs. bmaz have a great time at the show! Mr. E & I are seeing Fleetwood Mac coming up– not the same as the Stones, but *it’s Stevie* so will be awesome in its own way.

  4. quebecois says:

    Curiously, Ferrari is also exhausted and quite tired. Eau rouge next week, best F1 corner out there.

    • Rugger9 says:

      It’s clear that Faux doesn’t just hire chickenhawk loudmouths in the political side, it’s everywhere. Anyone look up Gottlieb’s playing career in full-contact field sports, since he’s a hoops point guard guy?

      I played for 15 years on the collegiate and upper division club level and there will be some luck involved in sticking with it that long. I saw some damn good players whose career finished in a couple of years or less through no fault of their own (i.e. Robert Paylor’s injury in the 2017 national title game, his GoFundMe is still active and he’s working on his business administration degree at Cal) so I have no tolerance for twits like Gottlieb who do not understand what it means when a 300 lb plus guy is trying to run you over and you have to stand there waiting for him so the ball gets where it needs to be.

      Glad to see Aikman rake Gottlieb over the coals.

  5. Peterr says:

    More from Deadspin on Luck:

    But a new report from ESPN’s Adam Schefter notes that the Colts are deciding to do right by their franchise quarterback that they failed to protect, and allowing him to keep that money.

    Per the report:

    Luck, 29, could have owed the Colts $12.8 million as a prorated portion of the $32 million signing bonus the Colts gave him when he signed his five-year extension in 2016, and another $12 million in roster bonuses he was paid in March. But Indianapolis waived its right to recoup the money and is allowing Luck to keep it all, after the poundings he’s taken and all he’s given to the franchise. It is, in an official way, his parting gift.

    Somewhere, Robert Irsay is spinning in his grave and cursing his son.

  6. Democritus says:

    Good for Luck, I’ve seen too many TBIs up close and personal, and it is NOT worth it. You can lose yourself, your impulse control, control of emotions/equanimity, memories, all the good stuff. I’m not a big football person, but boy oh boy did I ever love me some hockey. I still do, but with the DPS wheel of player safety and the fights I have barely watched in years.

    I started worrying more about the players than enjoy the game.

    Whoops just saw it really was mostly shoulder stuff.

    • BobCon says:

      We don’t really know about how much head trauma he’s had. A lot of concussions go undiagnosed, and a lot of the trauma comes from relatively low grade blows to the head that aren’t at the level of concussions.

      Add to that the ongoing stress that comes from a lot of long running inflammation and you can get some pretty awful stuff happening down the line. Luck is more fortunate than the poor souls who never made any money in pro football, at least. Some of the guys who got hurt badly at the amateur level and never had a pro career are really screwed.

      • Democritus says:

        Oh god, inflammation. The bane of my existence with my immune system, mmm maybe one of two banes to not invite bad luck…

        I’m really glad to see more athletes escaping with their bodies.

  7. tjallen says:

    Looking forward to Spa. Too bad my team Williams is so bad this year. I try to keep the faith, but it is hard to watch.

  8. bloopie2 says:

    I simply felt sad when I heard the news about Luck—to think that injury could drive someone so talented out of a career he obviously loved. Still, it seems like the right decision—and just when they are talking about taking preseason down to two games—sounds right, now.

    On a not really related note, I am learning to live with degenerative disc disease. It’s hard work but it’s worth it to avoid back surgery which I am told can be a bitch. What’s funny (and sports related) is that my doctor told me that most NBA players end up with such back problems, because of all the jumping they do—even though they are in superb physical condition.

    • bmaz says:

      Agree about Luck. But if that is how he felt, and he is truly a thoughtful and self aware guy it appears from over a lot of years, then good for him.

      Sorry to hear about the back issues. That sucks.

    • scribe says:

      About the back surgery.
      Avoid it at all costs. I speak as a lawyer who spent no small amount of time dealing with plaintiffs bearing injured backs. I learned a lot but the one thing I learned most was “no matter how good the surgeon, operating on a back does not make it better”. It might halt the decline, for a while, but it will never be right afterward.

      I had a client (commercial matter, not PI) who had been a Vegas showgirl for a number of years – the dancing and the costumes, etc. Almost surprisingly, she was not in pain, nor suffering from the long-term debilitating injuries or chronic pain so often associated with that line of work . What she didn’t know about stretching and flexibility wasn’t worth knowing. I was suffering from pretty generic sit-at-a-desk lower back problems and using the stretches she showed me fixed most of it.

      re: Luck. Sensible choice on his part. He had no O-line to protect him and that’s a recipe for disaster for any QB.

      I am really enjoying watching Antonio Brown wriggle and writhe in his full grievance-losing, “all in or all out” drama queen mode. I bet the Raiders thought they were being smart when they signed him. I know the Steelers were smart when they helped him find the door and held it so it wouldn’t hit him in the ass.

      I don’t know enough about Chung’s situation, but this will be interesting as it unfolds. He needs to talk to Kraft about “hey, I need a good criminal defense lawyer. You know anyone?”

      Speaking of Kraft, has anyone heard of the Orchids of Asia lately? Since the suppression motion, I mean?

      All Rise. Aaron Judge just launched a homer off Clayton Kershaw. Boom.

      Rob Manfred is closing quickly on King Roger the Clown in the race “commissioner most likely to do permanent damage to his sport”. The stupid “Players’ Weekend” with the funky uniforms and their childhood nicknames instead of their real names are not going to bring in kids to watch. In the case of the Yankees being forced to have names on their unis instead of
      “No Name, of Course” in Michael Kay’s timeless punchline. I hated my childhood nicknames and moved away when I grew up so I wouldn’t ever hear it again. All the launch angle bullshit and speed off the bat – OK, you’ve got the ballparks instrumented. Big f’g deal.

      Does anyone think Bad Teammate LeVeon Bell will have a prayer of doing even half of his prior production behind the OL of the J-E-T-S JETS JETS JETS? If so, I have a bridge to sell you.

      Iggles looking good.

      Stillers seem to have a big quiet fire in their bellies. They may well go very far. They definitely seem a happier bunch, a more dedicated bunch, driven now that they’re rid of Bell and Brown. Still, management laid down a marker on Tomlin when they re-did his contract: win or else. I like that.

      Does anyone else think Browns management has a weakness for picking QBs with big mouths and stupid taunting as their touchstone? First Young Mr. Manziel (now out of the CFL it seems) and his rubbing the money between his fingers. Now Mayfield taking pictures. Assholes. And then there’s OBJ and his bitching about the Giants. F’g Asshole. I wish James Silverback Harrison was still playing so he could turn another couple Browns’ careers into smoking craters.

      Enough for now. Yankees at Dodgers are on.

      • Eureka says:

        The nickname uniforms were so stupid. Phils were at inexplicably-kryptonite-to-them Marlins. The best parts of the series, for a former Yanks-loving kid, were the occasional glimpses of Don Mattingly.

        TAKE HIM (Manfred- and the useless stats-o-matics) DOWN, SCRIBE.

      • bmaz says:

        Agree with Scribe. Maybe sometimes it is necessary, but I am not familiar with a back surgery that is “good”. Maybe it can make things better, but…..I dunno.

        And, as he said, and I did previously too, we need a LOT better information. There are dopes out on the net that will blow bullshit. Without knowing anything.

        I will not link it, because it is crap, but see Professor Michael McCann’s “expert” take at Sports Illustrated. Now that is some supreme garbage.

        • BobCon says:

          The only exception I’d note is a low impact scoping to clean up something obvious with a vertebra can be worthwhile.

          Serious back surgery, though, ought to be approached with the level of caution of an Apollo rocket launch.

      • Peterr says:

        Re the Browns (and Colts):

        If only there was another QB available with high level NFL experience . . .

      • Tracy Lynn says:

        About back surgery — would never consider it. I have a degenerating disc in my back as well that is kept in line by a very good chiropractor. (Not advocating chiropractor to anyone — it simply works for me.) On the sports front, Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr had back surgery that went wrong (horribly, horribly wrong), which kept him from being on the coaches bench for most of a season. He gave an interview to Forbes in which he said people should seriously reconsider back surgery if at all possible.

        • P J Evans says:

          Radiologist says I have “mild degenerative spinal enthesopathy”, but not which part of my spine it affects, and apparently there’s no actual treatment for it. (Enthesopathy affects the connections between muscles/tendons and bones. Or so I gather from Wikipedia, which is the one place where I’ve found any information.)

  9. punaise says:

    Meanwhile my mediocre Giants take two from the A’s, gaining ground on 4 of the 5 teams ahead of them for Wild Card spot #2.
    Still playing to an inside straight.

    Unfortunately the three Bs (Buster, Belt, BCraw) are fading away into irrelevance.

    Duane Allman was no slacker on slide…

  10. Ohno says:

    Stones comment only: enjoy the show, bmaz, they’re in fine form this tour. Great setlist, and reviews note excellent sound in all arenas so far. I saw’em in DC, tickets courtesy of my 26-yr-old daughter and boyfriend. They threw in “Mercy Mercy,” a cover of a Don Covay single they hadn’t performed since 1969’s memorial concert for Brian Jones in Hyde Park. And both Mick and Keith derided 45 for his planned 7/4 tanks in the streets stunt the next day.

    As far as slide, the Sones’ one-time Mick Taylor is/was among the best. As an unheralded treat, I suggest a listen to Carla Olson’s “Too Hot for Snakes,” a live album featuring Taylor. It’s got a coupla’ social-justice anthems that’ll give you goosebumps. They include “Midnight Mission,” “Clean Cut Kid,” and “See the Light.” Plus versions of the Stones’ “Sway” and “Silver Train.”

    But, the Glimmer Twins still front “the greatest rock n’ roll band in the world,” proven by their live performance skills. For a blast of the past, check out an article on Rolling Stone’s (the magazine!) site about their ‘72 shows with opener Stevie Wonder, when they segued from “Uptight, Out of Sight,” into “Satisfaction.” (Not many bands have the brass to play behind an opening act and give them room for their hits within the headliners’ set.)

    And, can’t close without mentioning slide guitar virtuosos Roy Buchanan and Danny Gatton, both of whom were rumored to have been considered as Stones’ lead guitarists in times past, and both of whom are sadly no longer with us.

    • Sonso says:

      Three things:
      Your mention of Danny Gatton puts you in the pantheon of music knowledge. I spent many nights in clubs with Danny before his unfortunate demise. However, we would be remiss without mentioning Buddy Emmons, the greatest pedal steel player of all time. I will skip Danny’s jokes about Buddy: check out Redneck Jazz.

      Second, since EW is devoted, in large part, to discussing corruption, I would say that American “football” is the avatar of corruption and the antithesis of sportsmanship.

      Lastly, having seen Mick and the boys at least a dozen times, I can say that they are the greatest Rolling Stones cover band in the world. When someone says “great set list”, that is kind of an inside joke. They have been playing the SAME 18 songs in concert for the past 30+ years. When they do a 24-song show, you get a luck 6 songs, curated from the catalog. This tour, they are doing one (or a lucky 2). I would have been much happier paying 3x more and seeing them at the Wiltern (playing a full album, as they have done). When Mick sings that he can’t get no Satisfaction, you know he’s lying…🤑

  11. Democritus says:

    This is a great fun thread btw 🙂 Last dog days of summer ahead, cook outs on the horizon. Hope everyone has a good work week. I will be at home eating chilling, possibly even watching some old Matt Dillon.

  12. jhand says:

    Scribe has nothing but bad things to say about OBJ and Manziel, to which I concur. While in college, Manziel’s behavior was as bad, if not worse, than it was before he supposedly got “cleaned up” (doubtful) . But, was Beckham as big a butt in college as he has become since he started getting big money? Are there any Tiger fans who remember OBJ’s bright college days when he was receiving paltry sums to play?

    • Ohno says:

      Hello there Sonso! I’ve only seen the Stones four times, so ya got me beat! But in my misspent youth I collected bootleg Stones CDs (100s) and became well-acquainted with their live oeuvre. I swear I can recognize a Stones show from the applause alone. Yeah, they’re the best interpreters of their own work, but they’re uncommonly adept at interpreting American vernacular musics, see esp “Berry, Chuck,” but also blues, country, R&B etc. that’s mostly why I love ‘em! So, I’m wondering, why here in the DC, Va, Md area they didn’t do Sweet Virginia in their acoustic set when they’ve done it virtually every other place? Oh well, maybe doing Midnight Rambler (and Rocks Off) made up for it!

      • Sonso says:

        Yes, they are great curators of genuine American music (blues, country, r&r). Jagger, like Don Juan in Shaw’s classic, is actually not a libertine. Wouldn’t it be a great if they did a not-the-greatest-hits tour? If you want to see a great show with an artist who is still current and fertile, and age appropriate, see David Byrne’s American Utopia this fall in NYC.

  13. Rugger9 says:

    OT, but I noticed that Sean Duffy abruptly resigned from the House today. As usual it’s about family (a special needs child, for which he has my sympathy) but it seems to me that for a baby due in October it would behoove him to stay employed on the government dime until the child arrives. There are many more support options for a congresscritter than a former congresscritter, so why now and why so sudden?

    Maybe my cynicism is too deep, but I’m suspecting another shoe to drop.

    • Rayne says:

      He might want to be more inaccessible when the due date comes. There may be some very uncomfortable but private decisions to be made that are none of Congress’s, the GOP’s, or the public’s business.

      While I’m happy to hear a GOP district is now open, I’m going to respect this situation as private. Far more so than Jason Chaffetz’s bailing out of Congress, or the possible impending exit of GOP Rep. Steve Watkins (KS-2).

      • Doug R says:

        “The Topeka Capital-Journal reported he was dating women in Topeka during the campaign while engaged to be married and after he was wed, and identified a Wasilla, Alaska, resident who accused Watkins of unwanted sexual advances.”
        Is it a Palin? Or Palin adjacent?

    • paulpfixion says:

      Holy Shit! That’s my home district (live overseas now) and so glad to learn of it here! woohoo!!

      Duffy is low grade schmoozer–but dumb enough to get into trouble. I’ll look forward to learning what the possible truths may be.

      • Rugger9 says:

        Well, Duffy did try repeatedly to kill Obamacare while now taking advantage of the protection against using pre-existing conditions as a reason to refuse care. I believe the word is “hypocrite”.

        On Watkins: has anyone seen Willow or Bristol lately?

  14. mospeck says:

    Felt bad, and was shocked, by Luck’s retirement. He was a great player. His retirement lessens the league, and reminds of Jim Brown or Barry Sanders ones. Luck is v smart. He’s got 100M in the bank and wants to start an architectural firm. Good for him :) Lacerated kidneys and pissing blood are no fun at all. You gotta really love the game to play it.
    But these days find myself more like Bill B and EW– more worried about the players that we got here. More worried on Chungie and his cocaine possession rap. I hate cut day coming right up Sun 1 Sept. But am looking forward to destroy Steelahs day the Sun right after. Tommy to Flash 7/110/2
    Romans had the gladiators to take their minds off things. And we got the NFL. Thank God.

  15. fikshun says:

    Pink Floyd’s “Wish You Were Here” would have been a good choice as well. A few months ago, Jim Irsay won the auction for David Gilmour’s “Blackie” Stratocaster. The joke making the rounds at the time was that Irsay had finally acquired something that was guaranteed to be able to play. That joke has a lot more bite this week.

  16. P J Evans says:

    SFGate headline:
    Opinion: Trump shows he has no idea why he’s losing trade war

    They could have cut the last 5 words, and it would be just as accurate.

  17. mospeck says:

    Article on retiring from playing center in the NFL that reflects back on Luck’s decision to retire:

    Why do the swallows return to Capistrano? Why do the rooks try to make the 53 man? For ex. UFAs like Gunner Olszewski flying around on PRs with no fear of Death. Last I checked, a rook that sticks makes $480k. Partly explains it. Hell, that’s lawyer’s money :) But for doing a thing that is yet even more noble :) It’s art, really. Take 56 thousand yards Roethlisberger who’s taken a lot of hits. Can he still throw the long ball? He had two v pretty, nice long touch sixes to Juju and the Steeler’s new burner Washington.
    God hands out his various different gifts. I love the game and admire those who play it.

  18. Tommy D Cosmology says:

    I have really mixed feelings about dangerous sports. I’m all for greater safety features.

    My brother died playing football. Took a hit early in the game, played with a concussion, then passed out at the end of the game with swelling of the brain. My son is named after him and had a random aneurysm that nearly killed him at age 12.

    Formula 1 is my favorite sport to watch. French driver Bianchi was the last to die in an accident into a crane moving another car. I was at Michael Schumacher’s last race in Brazil. It was so sad that he was brain damaged from a skiing accident after his retirement.

    Point is, there are dangers we choose and there is that Hellen Keller quote:

    “Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing.”

    Blind and deaf. Gotta hand it to her.

    • bmaz says:

      Bianchi was a tremendous loss. Such an incredibly great young talent. And his death was on F1 and the track. F1 races in the wet, and that is fine. But they should know better than to leave the stupid on a treacherous corner in the wet. The fact that the last F1 death in a race was Senna is notable, but F1 and the track blew it on Bianchi.

      • Tommy D Cosmology says:

        So true. When Sutil wiped out on that wet corner, the area should have been yellow-flagged. Or, if it was (I don’t recall), the allowable speed was too fast. On another note I’d really like to see Williams do better. Last year w Massa and this year with Kubica.

        • bmaz says:

          Kubica is clearly not what he once was. His return to F1 is a nice story, but the pre-catastrophic injury Kubica could wrangle more out of even a crappy car like this year’s Williams. He was really good pre-injury. That said, the entire Williams team is just a hot mess. And it is hard to see how it gets better anytime soon.

        • bmaz says:

          Indeed. But Felipe Massa return was a lot more successful than Kubica. I feel like crap for saying it, and it is not fair. Kubica did not ask for any of it. He just did what he does. His recovery has been spectacular, but whether him, or the equipment, it is not working. And it is probably a little of both. Bad equipment gets you nowhere in F1, ask Fernando Alonso.

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