It’s pretty easy to guess who the media would choose for selfish reasons — Andrew Luck, no question. Luck did a conference call with the 49ers’ media this morning, and it was almost like Alex Smith was on the other line. Luck provided straight answers to nearly every question, and there were no one-sentence answers. Not once did he say, “I’m just trying to make plays.”
Luck and Colin Kaepernick are different quarterbacks and very different people, but they’ll be forever linked through Jim Harbaugh. And while they don’t spend all day chatting on the phone, they both know and respect each other thoroughly.
“He’s a great quarterback, very intelligent, very intuitive. Knows what he’s doing on the field,” Kaepernick said.
“He’s a nice guy. He’s easy to get along with. No attitude, no ego about anything. Then you see him throw and you realize, my gosh, what a live arm,” Luck said.
While they’ve had a couple conversations about football, Luck and Kaepernick won’t be making any eyebrow-based wagers on a commercial anytime soon. While Kaepernick’s endorsement deals keep adding up — including a Larry Bird vs. Michael Jordan re-do in this McDonalds commercial he did with Joe Flacco …
… Luck’s endorsement portfolio doesn’t quite match up to Kaepernick’s, but it’s growing.
“I’m definitely not against endorsements. I’ve been trying to do things that make sense, that fit, that I use in my life. I don’t have to lie about … To me, I just wanted to earn it on the field before doing too much off the field,” said Luck, who also mentioned working with companies like Klipsch, BODYARMOR, Quaker and Indiana University Health. So it’s not like he’s Amish, although Luck sometimes sports a patchy beard and still uses a phone that’s considered almost an antique these days.
“I still do not have a smart phone. My time at Stanford definitely heightened my appreciation for Silicon Valley and how it affects the world and the culture,” Luck said. “I like my phone. It makes calls. It can receive calls. It can text. What more do you need?”
Forget need, which quarterback would you want if given the opportunity to take either one? Lots of people are ranking these guys: Luck, Kaepernick, Russell Wilson and Robert Griffin III. But since a large number of 49ers fans read this site and are more familiar with Luck and Kaepernick than the other two, how would you rank them?
Contest Question: If you were a GM and had your choice of either Andrew Luck or Colin Kaepernick, who’d you go with?
One commenter will be randomly chosen to win a free large pizza (any toppings) from Amici’s East Coast Pizzeria. (Our contest winner from Monday’s question about Hunter Pence: rjm77.)
Luck came into the league as the consensus No. 1 overall pick, and performed valiantly after getting thrown into the fire as the new starter for a previously putrid Colts team. Kaepernick is “a talent that I don’t think the NFL has seen yet,” according to Joe Staley. It’s easy to make an argument for either player, especially since both quarterbacks are just getting started.
If you’re looking at this from a statistical point of view …
Luck (18 regular season starts): 382-of-693, 55.1%, 4,873 yards, 26 TD, 19 INT, 7.0 Y/A, 78.4 rating, 8 game-winning drives, 5 4th quarter comebacks, 331 rushing yards, 6 rushing TD
Kaepernick (18 regular season games, 9 starts): 179-of-290, 61.7%, 2,388 yards, 13 TD, 6 INT, 8.2 Y/A, 94.2 rating, 3 game-winning drives, 3 4th quarter comebacks, 522 rushing yards, 5 rushing TD
And just because, here’s Harbaugh on his first impressions of Luck when the pair started working together at Stanford:
“Plus-plus. A-plus-plus. It was similar to [QB] Colin [Kaepernick] with their enthusiasm. How they interact with their teammates and coaches, really everybody that they come in contact with. Real gentlemen, both of those two young men. That was my first impression when I met Colin was how much like Andrew he was from the personality standpoint.”
So let us know which quarterback you think is better, and good “luck” in the Amici’s contest!