As they saying goes, teams with two starting quarterbacks have none. Teams with two backup quarterbacks have a different sort of problem.
For the Texans, it’s a good problem to have.
Operating as the second quarterback on Saturday night, Case Keenum continued his stellar second preseason, completing 11 of 18 passes for 150 yards and a touchdown. He generated a passer rating of 106.2.
Last year’s primary backup, T.J. Yates, entered the game on the second series of the third quarter, completing seven of nine passes for 84 yards, with a touchdown. Yates’ passer rating was 142.6.
“I think it’s making both of them play better,” owner Bob McNair said after the game, via quotes distributed by the team. “They both had great nights. I mean how could you complain about either one? I’m proud of both of them.”
Eventually, one will be anointed as No. 2 on the depth chart, behind Matt Schaub.
“The easy way for me to answer that is to say they’re both doing their job,” coach Gary Kubiak said. “They are making it really hard on me, they are both doing good things, and that’s a good thing for our team.”
Keenum, undrafted out of Houston in 2012, has become an intriguing presence for a fan base that is beginning to believe it needs more of a spark at the position in order to advance beyond the divisional round of the playoffs. With a high degree of confidence and a grasp of the playbook, Keenum is trying to climb the ladder. And that’s possibly nudging seven-year Schaub to a higher level of performance; against the Dolphins, he completed eight of 11 throws for 92 yards, a touchdown, an interception, and a 90.0 passer rating.
According to John McClain of the Houston Chronicle, Schaub is expected to play close to three quarters in the next preseason game, against the Saints. If Yates replaces Schaub during the game, Keenum likely will start the fourth preseason contest.
As McClain explains it, the performance of the two backups will force Kubiak to keep three quarterbacks on the 53-man roster. Eventually, Keenum’s performance may force Schaub out the door.