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A Tale of Two Players: Views on Derek Stingley Jr.

Some pros, some cons, lots of effort.

NFL: AUG 02 Houston Texans Training Camp Photo by Ken Murray/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

When your Houston Texans selected cornerback Derek Stingley Jr third overall in this year’s NFL Draft, the reaction ranged from ecstatic to demoralized. Some thought this was a home run pick, others believed Texans general manager Nick Caserio wasted a high value draft asset on a failed gamble.

It’s nearly impossible to get an accurate read on a rookie this soon after the draft, but the bipolar optics continue.

For those who don’t spend way too much time following the minutia of Houston Texans lore, John Harris gets paid pretty pennies to write nice things about the team, players etc. So, as great of a football mind as he possesses, his opinion’s are biased and agenda driven. It’s literally his job to make the team look good.

Not everyone has their hand in Cal McNair’s pocket, however.

While his on-field execution might not look Jonathan Joseph-esque yet, you can’t question his heart and work ethic.

Now, as mentioned, Stingley is returning from a lisfranc injury, something old school Texans fans will remember from the Matt Schaub days of 2011. It’s a seemingly minor injury with major implications.

It’s not an easy injury to recover from, but so far Stingley looks like he’s getting after it.

And, Caserio and head coach Lovie Smith both seem pleased with Stingley’s post-injury progress.

Lovie Smith

You probably noticed Derek getting more reps today. We’ll continue to bring him along at the pace that we had set up before camp started. He gets a little better each day, too.

Nick Caserio knew it was a risk to draft Derek Stingley Jr. third overall. Even with the highlight All-American season at LSU in 2019, his lingering injuries and limited production for two years certainly would have stopped most general managers from making the selection.

Caserio isn’t like most executives. His history of working throughout the front office and scouting department made him wise regarding dissecting talent. He viewed the 6-foot cornerback as a safe option for the Houston Texans, so why argue?

Nick Caserio via Sports Illustrated

It’s about one day at a time, making progress that day, turning the page to the next day and stacking days on top of each other,

It’s hard to know what Stingley’s career will ultimately look like, but from what we’ve seen so far, if he fails to be an all-pro it won’t be from a lack of effort or willpower.