What would a bad year from Texans QB C.J. Stroud look like?
May 22, 2023 10:55 am CT
The Houston Texans drafted C.J. Stroud No. 2 overall in the 2023 NFL draft to upgrade their quarterback situation. Long term, the decision should work out.
For the 2023 campaign, Stroud will have to prove himself better than 12-year veteran Case Keenum and incumbent starter Davis Mills. The former Ohio State product should be able to win the job on talent alone, but Stroud isn’t exactly taking on the Big Ten. Stroud will basically take on Georgia every week.
There is an expectation that Stroud will do well for Houston, but what exactly does a bad rookie year look like for the 21-year-old?
According to Chris Trapasso from CBS Sports
, a worst-case scenario for Stroud would be if he had a 57% completion, 6.3 yards per attempt, 2,993 passing yards, 15 touchdowns, 17 interceptions, and 48 sacks on the season with a 71.5 passer rating.
Stroud’s worse-case scenario numbers aren’t too different than what they got out of Mills last season through 15 games. The former 2021 third-rounder from Stanford had a 61.0% completion, 6.5 yards per attempt, 3,118 passing yards, 17 touchdowns, 15 interceptions, and 33 sacks with a 78.8 passer rating.
The context of Stroud’s final stat line would have to be taken into consideration. If Stroud compiled such a worse-case scenario from being hesitant about taking shots downfield, refusing to scramble, or being late with getting rid of the ball, then a perception would develop that the Texans’ young quarterback just needed more work.
If Stroud’s interceptions were the result of one or two games wherein he threw three or four, and his passing touchdowns were impacted by the offense’s rushing touchdowns, there would be more confidence that the former Buckeye was doing his part as he learned the entire offense.
The most troubling aspect in either view of Stroud’s worse-case scenario is the sacks. Houston can’t afford to have their future under center taking that type of punishment.