Theismann: Former Players Wrong To Criticize Luck

Joe Theismann explains why former players like Steve Beuerlein have no right to criticize Andrew Luck's decision to retire

Taz and the Moose
August 27, 2019 - 9:35 am
Andrew Luck Colts

USA Today Images


Former Pro Bowl quarterback Steve Beuerlein was highly critical of Andrew Luck retiring from the NFL, saying the decision cannot be defended or justified and that it will haunt Luck in the future.

Well, another former quarterback – Super Bowl champion Joe Theismann – was critical of Beuerlein’s criticism.

“Steve’s a guy who was beat up,” Theismann said on Taz & The Moose. “Everybody has different passions. What right do we have as an individual to judge someone else about anything they decide they want to do? You don’t know what’s going on in their head, you don’t know what’s going on in their life and you can never put yourself in their situation. Alex Smith had a similar injury to mine, but I can’t put myself in Alex’s head. I think it’s wrong for any player to come out and judge another player because they made a decision regarding their decision to stay or leave the game. I think it is wrong.”

Theismann, like Beuerlein, was surprised that Luck retired, but he doesn’t think he should be criticized for it.

“Obviously the timing was such that it was unusual, but you never know when the mind is going to finally say, ‘I’m done,’’’ Theismann said. “He’s been through a lot. People don’t have an idea or a concept of how grueling rehabilitation is. You just don’t feel like you’re a part of anything, although everybody wants to make you feel that way. You get up in the morning, you hurt. You go to bed at night, you hurt. For Andrew, it’s been four solid years. Missed an entire year (in 2017). I wondered how much more his mind and his body could take. I admire the fact that he made a decision of his own accord. I never had a chance to make a choice, but in his case, I respect and admire his decision and I wish him all the luck in the world going forward.”

Unfortunately, not all Colts fans feel the same way. Luck was booed leaving the field at Lucas Oil Stadium on Saturday.

“When they booed him the other night, come on,” Theismann said. “For seven years, the guy’s given you everything he’s got, and now all of a sudden some of the fans are going to boo him because he’s making a decision that’s right for him – and not quote-unquote them? It’s a little absurd. . . . When somebody makes a decision based upon their mental and/or physical health, I think you have to be a little more understanding than that.”

Click below to listen to Theismann’s interview in its entirety.