ANDERSON — The best nicknames tend to be the most simple.
“Sweetness” seemed to capture the essence of Walter Payton on and off the field. “Prime Time” perfectly described Deion Sanders’ penchant for seeking out the spotlight. And “Captain Comeback” was a hard-earned moniker for Jim Harbaugh as he led the Indianapolis Colts to the AFC Championship Game following the 1995 regular season.
That’s why tight end Dwayne Allen thinks “Meal Ticket” is a perfect fit for second-year quarterback Andrew Luck.
“If he doesn’t produce, none of us eat,” Allen said following Tuesday’s morning walkthrough at Anderson University. “That simple.”
There’s just one potential hurdle. Luck isn’t too fond of the handle.
But Allen’s treating that fact the way he does most oncoming linebackers and pushing it aside.
“Who likes their nickname?” Allen asked rhetorically. “I’m not giving it because it’s something you like. I’m giving you a nickname because my easiest way is the first thing that comes to my mind to describe you. And, in Andrew’s case, Meal Ticket.”
Allen then provided a few examples of some nicknames he enjoys. Johnny Football, for the current Heisman Trophy winner, Johnny Manziel of Texas A&M. And “The Truth” for NBA star Paul Pierce, who recently was traded from the Boston Celtics to the Brooklyn Nets.
“Please, call me ‘The Truth’ any day,” Allen said. “I like that.”
Allen’s own nickname? Chuckie, as in the killer doll from the “Child’s Play” series of horror movies.
Why? Well, it’s best to let the second-year tight end explain it himself.
“‘Child’s Play’ was real big in ‘91, and my first birthday they gave me a knife to cut a cake,” he said. “Instead of cutting the cake, I was chasing around a dog. It wasn’t really a good look. So they nicknamed me Chuckie.”