C.J. Stroud 'will be our Week 1 starter in Baltimore.' DeMeco Ryans said.— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) August 28, 2023
Breaking: The #Texans have named No. 2 overall pick QB CJ Stroud as their Week 1 starting QB.— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) August 28, 2023
Stroud’s first NFL start will be vs. the #Ravens in Baltimore on September 10th. pic.twitter.com/mNjyn3TH4c
Although not officially the starting quarterback until tonight, Stroud’s appearances along with other 1st-string players all throughout the preseason led many to see this decision as one already made. Still, Ryans’ refusal to name a starter entering the final weekend of the preseason attracted the attention of the media, leading to a response by Stroud when questioned on the 24th:
I ain’t tripping. Just do what’s on my plate. I’m not worried about anybody else’s plate. I got to focus on what we got going on in this locker room,
And just getting better every day. It’s not about any of that stuff. It’s about competing every day and just getting better. That’s not my job. My job is to go out there and play. I got the fun stuff to do. - via DJ Bien Aime
Ryans, similar to his former boss Kyle Shanahan, made it repeatedly clear how each player had to “earn” their position in training camp.
“In everybody’s case, we’ll see who earns what, and you’ll see our starters in Baltimore.”
In tonight’s 17-13 victory over New Orleans, Stroud showcased more of his accuracy and anticipation, going 2/4 for 16 yards, finishing with a 3-yard pass to WR Nico Collins for his first score as a Texan:
Stroud now officially becomes the first rookie quarterback to start for the Houston Texans in Week 1 since David Carr, the first selection made by the franchise all the way back in 2002. This franchise has come a long way since then, and maybe Stroud can finally be the “franchise quarterback” that Houston has so desperately needed. Going back to his college highlights at Ohio State, I found it pretty easy to believe that he really is the answer:
Personally, I’m happy Houston has finally ended this “competition” and gone full steam ahead with Stroud. His development is essential for this season to be a considered a success, and the more chances he gets to play, the better.
What do you think of this announcement to end the preseason? Maybe you’d rather have seen Case Keenum get the go ahead to start, or maybe you’re one of the many Davis Mills truthers out there. Let us know what you think in the comments!