Luck and Colts get ready for match against Broncos |

Luck and Colts get ready for match against Broncos

Michael Marot
The Associated Press
Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton (13) runs following a reception during the first half of an NFL wildcard playoff football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Sunday, Jan. 4, 2015, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

INDIANAPOLIS — Andrew Luck is eager to get right back to work.

Rather than celebrate Sunday’s 26-10 win over Cincinnati, the Colts’ quarterback immediately explained he was moving on. And rather than engage in a discussion about another matchup with his predecessor, Peyton Manning, Luck focused on the big picture.

Yes, the third-year quarterback is starting to sound like a seasoned playoff veteran.

“I think we face the Broncos,” Luck said when asked about Round 3 with Manning. “It’s not the quarterback versus quarterback thing. We’re not on the field at the same time. I have a lot of respect for him, what he does, what he still does is amazing. He’s a stud. I’ll worry about the Denver defense, that’s what I worry about.”

That’s a stark contrast to the Luck of the last two seasons.

After a nine-game turnaround in 2012, they were the AFC’s surprise playoff team and subsequently made a first-round exit. Last year, after Luck pulled off a 28-point comeback to beat Kansas City, the Colts were overjoyed. They wound up losing the next week.

This year, Luck and the Colts (12-5) have adopted a business-like approach.

Luck wound up 31 of 44 with 376 yards and finished a playoff game without a turnover for the first time. He also delivered the game-changing 36-yard TD pass as Carlos Dunlap took him to the turf.

Now the Colts have bigger plans.

If Luck beats the Broncos (12-4) on their home turf, something he failed to do in a 31-24 opening-week loss, Indy will face either New England (12-4) or Baltimore (11-6) in the AFC championship game. It won’t be easy.

“They’re a great football team and obviously they’ve got a great, great quarterback,” Colts coach Chuck Pagano said. “It’s always a huge challenge and at the same time, we’re going to embrace the opportunity, embrace the moment. It’s exciting, it’s fun. It’s always a great chess match.”

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