Andrew Luck might be out of the NFL, but that doesn’t mean he can’t have a little fun on “Thursday Night Football.”
The former Indianapolis Colts quarterback, who is entering Year 5 of retirement after hanging up his cleats at age 29, reported for duty in full Civil War regalia after the San Francisco 49ers defeated the New York Giants on Thursday in a callback to the Captain Andrew Luck meme that developed its own online persona during his playing days.
This might be the most random postgame appearance we’ve ever seen from an athlete, but we’re also not complaining:
He really does look like a man taken straight out of the Battle of Gettysburg, right down to the unkempt facial hair. The Twitter account at the center of the meme, @CaptAndrewLuck, became a fixture on social media after Colts games during Luck’s career, with its 1800s-tinged recaps of the day’s “battles.” It was more entertaining than the actual social media accounts of most athletes.
Luck really leaned into the character Thursday, to the delight of his hosts:
Luck has made sporadic public appearances since his shocking retirement in 2019 after four years of persistent injuries. As far as we know, he had previously spoken on camera only twice since retiring, once in an ESPN appearance alongside Robert Griffin III ahead of last year’s College Football Playoff championship game at his old stomping ground of Lucas Oil Stadium and another during a football game at his alma mater, Stanford.
Luck and his wife, Nicole, have welcomed two daughters in the meantime, with Luck taking up “full-time daddy duty” — at least when he’s not defending the republic.
By all accounts, Luck has been enjoying his retirement, and judging from his appearance Thursday, he’s starting to really enjoy it. That’s good because the whole point of his retirement was that football was bringing him more pain than joy.