Ex-Colts coach: Draft Andrew Luck

Updated: October 24, 2011, 1:37 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

Former Colts coach Tony Dungy says Indianapolis should draft Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck if it gets the No. 1 overall pick, regardless of Peyton Manning's good -- or bad -- health.

"If Manning doesn't play, then you got your quarterback of the future," Dungy said on Sunday's pregame show for "Sunday Night Football." "If Manning comes back, is totally healthy, looks like he's going to play 3-4 more years, then they could trade [Luck]."

Dungy was clarifying comments he made on NBC colleague Dan Patrick's radio show Friday regarding Luck, Manning and the Colts.

"I would see [Peyton] competing and playing as long as he wanted," Dungy told Patrick, citing the Bengals' recent two-pick haul for the quasi-retired Carson Palmer as evidence of a quarterback's value. "And if it gets to the point to where, hey, he comes back and it looks like he's gonna play three or four more years, and you say, 'We've got Andrew Luck, we've got an asset, we trade him.' ... I think that asset is too much to pass up, even if your quarterback wasn't all that happy about it."

Dungy said Sunday that the "him" he mentioned in the trade proposal on Patrick's show was Luck, not Manning.

Manning is currently rehabbing a neck injury that required two different surgeries this year, while the Colts fell to 0-7 following Sunday night's 62-7 drubbing at the hands of the New Orleans Saints. There is some question as to whether Manning will return to the level of play that made him a sure-fire Hall of Famer.

Luck, a Heisman Trophy candidate for the Cardinal, elected to return to school for his senior season and is widely assumed to be the No. 1 overall pick in the 2012 draft.

"I just don't think you pass on a great quarterback if you have the opportunity. If need be, you can trade it away," Dungy said Sunday night. "Hopefully they don't end up with that pick. But if they do, I assume they think Luck is the best asset to have in your pocket."

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