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Is C.J. Stroud Already Ahead of Davis Mills?

Has the rook locked the top spot on June 5?

NFL: NFL Draft Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

These days, it’s not often an NFL team drafts a quarterback in the top five, then has him sit behind an incumbent who wasn’t a lock as the starter. Sure, if Patrick Mahomes or Joe Burrow is your signal caller, you’re likely to not draft a QB early in the first round, but if you do, it’s a given the rook is on the bench. However, the fact is, those teams that do draft a QB early usually aren’t content with the guy already in the chair.

Not only does new Houston Texans quarterback C.J. Stroud have that going for him, but in a short timeframe he moved from operating with the second stringers to the starters.

DeMeco Ryans (via Brooks Kubena of The Houston Chronicle)

Each day, he continues to get better, continues to get more comfortable with the verbiage of the offense and his command of the huddle. He is definitely progressing in the right direction, and the sky is the limit for him.

It’s pretty standard for a coach to praise a rookie quarterback to the press. That’s how you build a guy up. And, if you haven't been paying attention, Ryans is a “build ‘em up” kinda coach.

In watching Stroud and Mills back to back, both can sling the rock, but Stroud seems more fluid in his motions. Is that due to stronger familiarity, better athleticism, confidence, physical health? No matter which, it bodes well for Stroud.

Beyond that, Stroud is putting in the mental work to cement his place under center. A recent story from Camp has Stroud seeking out defensive coordinator Matt Burke to learn more about a Texans coverage Stroud wasn’t familiar with previously.

While it’s still way early in the process, all signs seem to point up when it comes to the Texans potential new franchise quarterback.

Bleacher Report

According to Pro Football Talk’s Charean Williams, Texans quarterbacks coach Jerrod Johnson loves what he has seen out of the second overall pick of the 2023 draft, saying the Ohio State product is “already way, way ahead of pace” with his footwork and timing.

So far the 2023 offseason has been the most promising, most ‘full of excitement’ this fanbase has seen in a very long time. Hopefully that wave of positive momentum crashes over into the season and washes away the filth of the last decade. And, C.J. Stroud successfully rides that wave for years to come.