Why Andrew Luck decided to retire now


Andrew Luck shocked the world Saturday night by retiring. Well, Adam Schefter shocked the world at 9:28 p.m. ET Saturday when he tweeted the news that Luck was retiring. It was such a surprise that one of Luck’s best friends, Matt Hasselbeck, told me Sunday, “I thought Adam Schefter got hacked. I was sitting there watching the college game Saturday night and saw it. It stopped me in my tracks. Stunned. I was in Indy on Friday, and I got no sense of this.”

Luck’s two statements, 15 days apart, say that this was a bolt out of the blue—either that or that he wasn’t being straight with me. Those two statements sound incongruous. How could such a great quarterback, coming off his best pro season at just 29 years old, make what appeared to be such an impulsive decision? Though I did not speak with Luck this weekend, I don’t think it was impulsive, I do think he was being straight with me, and I understand how Luck’s world could totally flip in two weeks. I think it began flipping a few days after we spoke.

The same day Luck told me there was no doubt he’d play in the opener, Reich told me Luck’s latest injury, to his left calf, was “like child’s play” compared to his return after all his shoulder issues. But in the days after Luck talked to me in training camp, he felt more pain in rehab. Further examination revealed a more extensive and slightly mysterious injury stretching from the calf to his ankle. There would be no quick fix. More rehab, and a good chance he’d either have to play hobbled, and in significant pain, if he played at the start of the season. And if he didn’t play to start the season, he’d be a question mark hovering over the franchise, as he’d been in 2015 (shoulder injury, fractured ribs, kidney laceration), 2016 (played through shoulder pain all year), 2017 (missed the year after labrum surgery) and the off-season and training camp of 2018 (shoulder soreness). Then four months of feeling good and playing great. Then, when he ramped up workouts for 2019, last March, this calf/ankle thing appeared and just wouldn’t go away.

Put it this way: For about 42 of the last 47 months, dating back to the original shoulder injury in September 2015, football meant pain to Andrew Luck. Not joy. Pain. As Luck described Saturday night: “It’s been unceasing, unrelenting, both in-season and off-season … Taken the joy out of the game. And after 2016, when I played in pain and was unable to regularly practice, I made a vow to myself that I will not go down that path again.”

Which led Luck to Irsay’s office last Monday. The meeting last a little more than two hours. Ballard and Reich soon realized this was not I think I’m going to retire. This was, It’s over.

There was a time in Monday’s meeting when options were suggested. One of them: Take his time healing the right way without hurrying, and go on IR with a return designation, meaning he could return for the last two months of the season if he got healthy. That seemed to make the most sense—he’d have nine weeks from now to see if the calf/ankle could be fixed, and the Colts would have been more than happy to take the risk of paying $21.25 million for Luck to try to play in 2019, with backup Jacoby Brissett taking some or all the snaps this season. But whatever alternatives got suggested, Luck, one of the smartest players in any sport, seemed immovable.

“My mind’s made up,” he said.

One other clue on the timeline: Luck said he didn’t imagine retiring till two weeks ago. But once he started thinking about it, one source said, it made more and more sense to him. He was tired. He felt like if it wasn’t one thing, it’d be another.

Reich and Ballard both spent time between Tuesday and Friday feeling out Luck about whether he’d reconsider—he never wavered—and then making sure Luck was sure he wanted to do it now. He did. Neither Reich nor Ballard would disclose the contents of their conversations with Luck. But late in the week, Reich said, he and Luck had a longer meeting in the coach’s office, an emotional meeting.

“It’s like we were saying goodbye,” Reich said from his office Sunday afternoon. “I knew, knew in my heart, he wasn’t going to change his mind. He seemed to have great clarity and peace.”

Read more from Football Morning in America here

NFL quarterback rankings 2023: Chris Simms’ top 40 QB countdown ahead of upcoming NFL season


While the NFL is a league that is ever-changing, some things are set to stay the same in 2023 — like the revealing of Chris Simms’ top 40 QB countdown.

Last year’s list saw Josh Allen take his place atop the quarterback throne, with Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes and Los Angeles’ Justin Herbert not far behind at No. 2 and No. 3, respectively. It was, however, Mahomes who would ultimately reign over all NFL quarterbacks at the end of the season, as the 27-year-old collected both the NFL MVP honors and his second Lombardi Trophy.

This NFL offseason, however, has brought some intriguing adjustments that are likely to shake up Simms’ rankings.

While some signal-callers such as Jalen Hurts and Lamar Jackson found their prolonged home with massive contract signings, others will be venturing to a new franchise in search of a fresh start. Aaron Rodgers‘ trade to the New York Jets is unquestionably the most staggering shift, but other quarterbacks on the move such as Derek Carr and Jimmy Garoppolo cannot be forgotten.

RELATED: Mike Florio gives an inside look into the Lamar Jackson deal

And with three of the first four picks in the 2023 NFL Draft being spent on a quarterback, emerging talent will likely turn the tides for some franchises this upcoming season.

See below for Chris Simms’ top 40 QB countdown ahead of the upcoming season. Be sure to subscribe to Chris Simms Unbuttoned for more on the 2023 NFL season as well as an unfiltered look at the NFL featuring player access, unabashed opinion, X&O film breakdown and stories from a life in and around football.

RELATED: Peter King’s latest offseason NFL power rankings

Chris Simms’ 2023 Top 40 QB Countdown:

40. Desmond Ridder (ATL)

39. Sam Howell (WAS)

38. Bryce Young (CAR)

37. CJ Stroud (HOU)

36. Anthony Richardson (IND)

35. Mike White (MIA)

34. Gardner Minshew (IND)

33. Taylor Heinicke (ATL)

32. Jarrett Stidham (DEN)

31. Jordan Love (GB)

30. Davis Mills (HOU)

29. Tyler Huntley (BAL)

28. Andy Dalton (CAR)

27. Sam Darnold (SF)

26. Brock Purdy (SF)

25. Kenny Pickett (PIT)

24. Baker Mayfield (TB)

23. Justin Fields (CHI)

22. Jimmy Garoppolo (LV)

21. Tua Tagovailoa (MIA)

20. Mac Jones (NE)

19. Kyler Murray (AZ)

18. Derek Carr (NO)

17. Jared Goff (DET)

16. Ryan Tannehill (TEN)

15. Geno Smith (SEA)

14. Russell Wilson (DEN)

13. Dak Prescott (DAL)

12. Kirk Cousins (MIN)

11. Daniel Jones (NYG)

10. Matthew Stafford (LAR)

9. Deshaun Watson (CLE)

8. Aaron Rodgers (NYJ)

7. Jalen Hurts (PHI)

6. Trevor Lawrence (JAX)

5. Lamar Jackson (BAL)

4. Justin Herbert (LAC)

3. Josh Allen (BUF)

2. Joe Burrow (CLE)

1. Patrick Mahomes (KC)

2023 NFL Schedule Release: Start time, how to watch, live stream, channel


With another exciting NFL Draft in the books, teams can now turn their gaze toward the road to Super Bowl LVIII in Las Vegas. The path to Super Bowl glory, however, is about to become abundantly more clear with the 2023 NFL season schedule release.

This year’s NFL season schedule release is nearly here, with the entirety of the 2023 NFL schedule being unveiled on Thursday, May 11 at 8 p.m. ET on both Peacock and NFL Network. See below for everything you need to know for one of the offseason’s most anticipated events.

RELATED: Click here for full analysis on Rounds 1-7 of the 2023 NFL Draft

When will the 2023 NFL season schedule be released?

While all 272 matchups have been known since the conclusion of the 2022 regular season, the order and dates for these games have remained a mystery. The secret is nearly out, however, with every NFL game on the brink of revelation.

The full 2023 NFL schedule will be released on Thursday, May 11 at 8:00 p.m. ET.

How can I watch the 2023 NFL season schedule release?

The 2023 NFL season schedule release will take place Thursday, May 11 on Peacock, NFL Network, NFL.com and the NFL app at 8 p.m. ET.

While the entirety of the schedule will be unveiled at that time, select games have already been and will continue to be released prior to the official event. Ahead of the 2023 NFL season schedule release, the following games will be announced:

Who will play in the 2023 NFL Kickoff game?

The first game of the 2023-24 NFL season will see the reigning Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs take the field in Arrowhead Stadium.

The opponent that will meet Patrick Mahomes and company in Kansas City, however, remains to be revealed.

Which NFL teams have international games in 2023?

While the majority of the matchups set to take place next season have yet to be announced, the league has already revealed which teams will head overseas for international showdowns.

Below is the full list of international NFL games for the 2023-24 season, with three in London, U.K., and two in Frankfurt, Germany.

Falcons vs. Jaguars: Week 4, Oct. 1 at 9:30 a.m. ET | Wembley Stadium in London, U.K.

Jaguars vs. Bills: Week 5, Oct. 8 at 9:30 a.m. ET | Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London, U.K.

Ravens vs. Titans: Week 6, Oct. 15 at 9:30 a.m. ET | Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London, U.K.

Dolphins vs. Chiefs: Week 9, Nov. 5 at 9:30 a.m. ET | Frankfurt Stadium in Frankfurt, Germany

Colts vs. Patriots: Week 10, Nov. 12 at 9:30 a.m. ET | Frankfurt Stadium in Frankfurt, Germany

RELATED: NFL’s 2023 international games full of “star power”

When is the Super Bowl and where will it be taking place?

Stars will be shining bright in Las Vegas, Nevada, for Super Bowl LVIII, set to take place on Feb. 11, 2024, at the home of the Raiders in Allegiant Stadium.

This will be the first Super Bowl to ever take place in Las Vegas, which hosted the 2023 Pro Bowl and 2022 NFL Draft.

Be sure to follow ProFootballTalk for the latest news, updates, and storylines about the upcoming NFL season!