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Sunday, September 27, 2020

Football

Texans look for stability at quarterback position


Tom Savage is finally getting a shot at the starting quarterback position this season after years of sitting on the bench for the Texans. | Courtesy of Houston Texans Media

The Texans will look to solidify lingering roster questions in their last two games of the preseason. The biggest question mark is whether head coach Bill O’Brien will keep his word and start Tom Savage on week one of the regular season.

Houston has had their fair share of issues with the quarterback position, which has become something of a revolving door. In the past three years O’Brien has rotated through eight different quarterbacks due to poor play or injuries. The horrendous signing of Brock Osweiler last off-season has made the city more anxious than ever for a competent quarterback.

Ailing offense

Many would argue that the defense is stout enough to contend for a Super Bowl, especially with the addition of a healthy J.J. Watt, but the Texans’ offense hasn’t been able to keep pace.

In an attempt to counteract the poor output from the quarterback position, the team drafted college sensation Deshaun Watson.

Hopes are high for the young rookie, but after the draft, O’Brien was quick to fend off the idea of the rookie seeing early action.

“Tom’s playing well this camp. Tom has really had a good camp. He’s only thrown three incompletions in two games,” O’Brien said. “He’s really got good command of our offense, and like I’ve said, Deshaun is a very, very good, young player who has a great future in this league.”

Leader emerges

Savage has been impressive over the past couple of games having sustained a respectable 118 QBR while completing more than 80 percent of his passes.

All stats accumulated during the preseason should be taken with a grain of salt, but Savage has yet to show that he’s anything but the starter come week one.

The only thing standing in the way of Savage is his health, which has been an issue in the past. The stocky quarterback has been injured his entire career with the Texans due to a variety of ailments, but O’Brien remains optimistic regarding his player’s longevity.

“He’s been injured over the last three years of his career, but if you look at the history of the league, there’s a number of guys who have played that were injured early in their career,” O’Brien said. “Tom is a smart guy. He can throw the ball really well, he knows our system, and he’s a guy that we’re real excited about working with.”

Savage will need to continue his stellar play to quiet the Watson supporters who grow louder as the rookie continues to impress.

Sticking with Savage

While the play of first round pick Deshaun Watson has been promising, it hasn’t been enough to deter Coach O’Brien from changing the starting lineup.

“I mean, let’s put the cards on the table,” O’Brien said in a news release. “That’s what it is. But Tom has been here for four years. The way that we want to play, the style that we need to play relative to getting guys lined up, relative to cadence, relative to protection points and route reads and putting guys in the right spot. Tom’s ahead of Deshaun on that.”

If Savage starts the entirety of the season, which is O’Brien’s plan, it will be the first time a quarterback starts all 16 regular season games since Matt Shcaub in 2012.

Tom Savage will lead the Texans on Sept. 10 in a divisional game against the Jacksonville Jaguars.

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