The Indianapolis Colts have announced that they signed quarterback Andrew Luck to a long-term contract extension, locking him up through the 2021 season on a new six-year deal. Luck, the first overall pick by the Colts in 2012, has been playing on his rookie contract and a multi-year extension was always expected. Colts owner Jim Irsay announced that the deal totals $140 million dollars, which is the largest contract in NFL history.
NFL Network's Ian Rapoport said the guaranteed money in Luck's new deal will pay out approximately $75 million over the first three years, and slightly less in the last two years of the contract. The deal sets several NFL records, including the average per year over the life of the contract, the guaranteed money and total compensation.
Other quarterbacks around the league have surely taken note of Luck's deal, which sets the quarterback market significantly higher than it had been.
Luck was, unsurprisingly, pleased with the outcome, and said the record-breaking deal won't change the way he approaches the game.
"I truly appreciate Mr. Irsay and the Irsay family for the level of commitment and trust they've shown in me," Luck said. "I've loved being a Colt and I'll continue to love being a Colt. It won't change my process or preparation in any way. It's all about winning and we understand that in this building. It's a great winning franchise that knows how to win. We need to get back to the playoffs and give ourselves a chance to get to the Super Bowl."
Irsay said he "couldn't be happier," adding that he appreciated the ease with which the team was able to negotiate this deal with Luck's camp.
"This process was quiet, smooth, productive and now we have a six-year deal done," Irsay said. "It's a big deal for the franchise that we got this done."
An extension was expected last offseason after Luck threw 40 touchdowns against just 16 interceptions in 2014, but it took longer than expected. Some of that was due to Luck's desire to not negotiate a contract during the regular season and the fact that last season was such a disaster for both quarterback and team. Luck, who had shown serious progress in each NFL season, had his worst year in 2015.
Luck was set to miss a limited amount of games due to a lacerated kidney and a partially torn abdominal muscle, but the recovery took longer than expected and he missed the rest of the season with the injuries. In the seven games he was able to start for the Colts, he completed 162 of 293 passes for 1,881 yards, 15 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. The team missed the playoffs for the first time since Luck entered the league.
The Colts exercised their fifth-year option worth $16.155 million on Luck, but they weren't going to let their franchise quarterback hit the open market, even after a down season. And with a deal of this magnitude, it's clear the team believes Luck's performance in 2015 was an anomaly.
Now that Luck has signed his extension, he can go ahead and purchase the ping-pong robot he's had his eye on for weeks. Luck appeared on The Ringer podcast with Kevin Clark in May, and he divulged his plans to purchase "a robot ping-pong thing that can hit balls back at you." With this massive extension, that shouldn't be a problem.
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