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Quarterback “competition” in Houston won’t be a real one

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Texans quarterback Tom Savage has declared himself to be “super ready” for the competition with rookie Deshaun Watson. Actually, Savage doesn’t need to be ready at all.

As John McClain of the Houston Chronicle explained the situation on Tuesday’s PFT Live, there is no true competition. Savage is the starter, and he’ll remain the starter until injured or proven ineffective during the regular season. So while G.M. Rick Smith has said Watson will compete for the job, it won’t be the typical competition that entails the splitting of first-team reps with a winner announced before Week One.

This doesn’t mean Watson won’t be the next Dak Prescott. For that to happen, however, Savage and Brandon Weeden will need to be proven incompetent or incapacitated. As McClain explained it, coach Bill O’Brien doesn’t want to put a rookie quarterback on the field unless there’s no other choice.

Last month, O’Brien made clear his views regarding the difficulty of entrusting the job to a rookie from the outset of his first season. McClain, who knows the Texans as anyone, made clear his belief that the supposed competition has already ended, because it never will begin. Tom Savage is the guy.

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46 Responses to “Quarterback “competition” in Houston won’t be a real one”
  1. cheapseater says: May 9, 2017 2:01 PM

    Good news for other AFCS fans everywhere.

  2. ricko1112 says: May 9, 2017 2:04 PM

    The Texans quest to find a consistent starting QB continues. Maybe Watson will turn out to be the next Dak after all. While teams realize that Dak (4th round) should have been taken much higher, the Texans will realize that Watson should have been taken in the 4th round.

  3. harrisonhits2 says: May 9, 2017 2:04 PM

    “For that to happen, however, Savage and Brandon Weeden will need to be proven incompetent or incapacitated.”

    Hasn’t Weeden already be proven incompetent?

  4. quickbooks12 says: May 9, 2017 2:05 PM

    Until they lose 2 or 3 games and the fans demand Watson

  5. chargerdillon says: May 9, 2017 2:07 PM

    If Watson is the real deal, they’ve got a 2-3 year window RIGHT NOW to go win it.

    All he really needs to do is be just above average and minimize mistakes for the Texans to be one of the clear front runners to win it all.

    The sheer entertainment factor of seeing the Houston Texans win a chip before the already anointed royalty that is Dak and Zeke would be fantastic. Jerry would be beside himself.

  6. damcmp says: May 9, 2017 2:08 PM

    you could put what John McClain knows on the end of a head of a pin.. “the Texans cut Jamie Sharper because they knew he was going to have a Bakers cyst in 10 months”

  7. texansfan82 says: May 9, 2017 2:09 PM

    As a Texans fan, I still find this hard to believe. I expect Watson to have over-taken Savage by the time the season rolls around.

  8. therealraider says: May 9, 2017 2:09 PM

    Brandon Weeden is still in the league? Teams are desperate for QB’s. Geezus.

  9. waynefontesismyfather says: May 9, 2017 2:12 PM

    I’ll applaud the Texans here. If Savage lights the world on fire, great, they finally found their QB. If he sucks bring in the next guy.

    If he is good enough to get the job done use Watson as trade-bait. There shouldn’t be any controversy here. Watson is entitled to nothing, he’s a rookie, live and learn.

    If he is like most millennials and just can’t wait his turn he could always dump some Polonium-210 into Savage’s Gatorade. You know, the stuff that Russian spy had dumped in his tea which killed him. One way to move up the depth chart I guess.

  10. tylawspick6 says: May 9, 2017 2:15 PM

    Good move, but their D will be crappy once they end up trotting Watson out there in 2018.

  11. bleedingfacemask says: May 9, 2017 2:17 PM

    Remember the days when people were saying that Matt Flynn was the starter, and the talk from the coach about the third-string rookie competing for the job was just a bunch of smoke? Good times…

  12. handsomerob86 says: May 9, 2017 2:18 PM

    Savage may surprise people if he can stay healthy. The guy looked good for the two games he was in last year.

  13. jjackwagon says: May 9, 2017 2:18 PM

    Savage is the guy…until he isn’t.

  14. aj66shanghai says: May 9, 2017 2:23 PM

    Maybe they could have worded it better. But I think we all understood. Not an open competition but he’s there to do his best to push the guys ahead of him. And if he looks great and they stink, he’ll get a shot. But they won’t rush him out just for the sake of placating fans.

    The crazy thing is that within the near future we’ll be talking about how tough the AFC South is, with the rise of the Titans and Jags looking imminent – and the funny part will be that the Colts will be the worst team, even after getting their guy in Luck

  15. poison66 says: May 9, 2017 2:24 PM

    I think Weeden is a better qb than Savage. It’s not his fault he started for a HORRIBLE Browns team!

  16. jackedupboonie says: May 9, 2017 2:36 PM

    Explain to me how Russell Wilson and all 5′-10″ of him who played same amount of time in college but didn’t beat a powerhouse like Bama for a title could win starting job day 1 and play well with a great defense….but Watson has been pre determined to sit?

  17. nhpats says: May 9, 2017 2:53 PM

    “This doesn’t mean Watson won’t be the next Dak Prescott. For that to happen, however, Savage and Brandon Weeden will need to be proven incompetent or incapacitated.”

    – haven’t they both already shown they are not competent to be starting QBs in the NFL?

  18. tgadler says: May 9, 2017 2:55 PM

    McClain is wrong about the Texans about as often as he’s right.

  19. walker1191 says: May 9, 2017 2:56 PM

    No one needs to decide anything right now, and they sure don’t need to announce it. Bring the guys in, let them practice and see what happens.

    I’m sure if Watson looks good enough he is not going to sit on the bench based on some pre-conceived notion that rookies can’t play QB. And of course even if O’Brien did thank last year he saw a rookie do pretty well n Dallas and would be an idiot to dismiss the idea before training camp.

  20. savethebs says: May 9, 2017 3:02 PM

    Explain to me how Russell Wilson and all 5′-10″ of him who played same amount of time in college but didn’t beat a powerhouse like Bama for a title could win starting job day 1 and play well with a great defense….but Watson has been pre determined to sit?
    ———————————–
    They didn’t draft Russ thinking he’d beat out Flynn. He just showed up & impressed everyone in camp & they made the call to go with him. Seems like that worked out well.

  21. kemp13 says: May 9, 2017 3:10 PM

    nhpats says:
    May 9, 2017 2:53 PM
    “This doesn’t mean Watson won’t be the next Dak Prescott. For that to happen, however, Savage and Brandon Weeden will need to be proven incompetent or incapacitated.”

    – haven’t they both already shown they are not competent to be starting QBs in the NFL?

    Savage has, what, 2 starts? Think that’s enough to prove anything?

  22. cadreamer1969 says: May 9, 2017 3:15 PM

    Huh? McClain: Houston Texans will draft quarterback over Clowney

    All these guys are the same. They think they are important but are like everyone else just guessing.

  23. guyjuneguyjune says: May 9, 2017 3:23 PM

    Teams like Houston have only a window of opportunity over 2 or 3 years to get to the Super-Bowl. Houston was head-faked by Jones and Romo and got rid of Osweiler. They’re not going to the promised land with Savage and they know it. They dumped Osweiler too fast and even the owner didn’t know it. Osweiler will be a massive up-grade for Cleveland this year. If he succeeds the Texans will look like….not so smart.

  24. Seprix says: May 9, 2017 3:29 PM

    Texans shouldn’t be leaking stuff like this. Geez. What if Watson is just that good? Might as well make them both work as hard as possible, and see what you have.

  25. akira1971 says: May 9, 2017 3:46 PM

    This is obvious. Bill O’Brien runs a complicated Erhardt-Perkins system where all receivers have option routes, so the QB and receivers need to be on the same page.

    Savage has been learning it for four years. It’ll take Watson a while to get that part down, so it’s a little different than what Russell walked into at Seattle or Dak last year in Dallas.

    Watson might be more physically gifted, but the E-P system in hard to learn – ask Brock Osweiller how that went trying to learn on the job.

  26. liongator says: May 9, 2017 3:55 PM

    Just like the Browns, never should have let Hoyer go. Had one bad playoff game, but he was better than Osweiler and he’s better than Savage or Weeden. At the very least you wouldn’t have had to give up a 2nd round pick to dump him like you did Ostrichwieler.

  27. mototax says: May 9, 2017 4:03 PM

    Amazing how there are so many experts on this board telling us Savage isn’t good enough. I believe he’s played 2-3 more games than me at this point. That’s enough to grade him a failure?

    As for Weeden, he’s a competent backup. He can come in an d get a save every now and then.

    This is a perfect environment for Watson to grow in. No need to hurry him.

  28. v2787 says: May 9, 2017 4:18 PM

    Brandon Weeden is still in the league. Meanwhile, Colin Kaepernick is unemployed. Go figure.

  29. tonebones says: May 9, 2017 4:27 PM

    If Jason Garrett could get Dak Prescott ready to play his rookie year, why can’t O’Brien get Watson ready? Houston’s roster is just as strong, if not stronger than Dallas was last year. I’m thinking the real problem in Houston is the coach.

  30. bassplucker says: May 9, 2017 4:49 PM

    Yeah and at one point last year Carson Wentz was gonna be inactive on game days for the Eagles, too.

  31. clemsonfanjt says: May 9, 2017 4:50 PM

    This is Coach speak only……talking about trying to build up your Veteran player so he dont think he is going to lose his job…..DW4 will be showing out week 1

  32. Torrey says: May 9, 2017 4:54 PM

    Texans have a bye week in week 7. I’d guess they prepare Watson during that extra week to take over the offense.

  33. jgedgar70 says: May 9, 2017 4:55 PM

    harrisonhits2 says:
    May 9, 2017 2:04 PM

    “For that to happen, however, Savage and Brandon Weeden will need to be proven incompetent or incapacitated.”

    Hasn’t Weeden already be proven incompetent?
    _____
    And incapacitated?

  34. ndallasruss says: May 9, 2017 5:00 PM

    Weeden is 84 years old – doesn’t that count as “incapacitated”?

  35. fakebookfreddy says: May 9, 2017 6:28 PM

    Meanwhile, GM Rick is still steering the ship. Danger Will Robinson, Danger!

  36. jag1959 says: May 9, 2017 6:45 PM

    v2787 says:
    May 9, 2017 4:18 PM
    Brandon Weeden is still in the league. Meanwhile, Colin Kaepernick is unemployed. Go figure.
    ______________________________

    It’s honestly not that hard to figure

  37. ramfanmatt says: May 9, 2017 7:18 PM

    If Watson outplays Savage in camp and preseason, then I have a hard time believing they’ll keep him stashed on the bench.

  38. magikskillz says: May 9, 2017 8:06 PM

    This doesn’t mean Watson won’t be the next Dak Prescott. For that to happen, however, Savage and Brandon Weeden will need to be proven incompetent or incapacitated. As McClain explained it, coach Bill O’Brien doesn’t want to put a rookie quarterback on the field unless there’s no other choice.

    I’m pretty sure that Brandon Weeden as already proven himself to be an incompetent quarterback. The only question mark is whether he is the backup quarterback or the third-string quarterback. Tom Savage has never really been giving a chance to show what he can do. Like this article suggests, Savage will start and get a chance to lead the Texans. The team most likely will be patient and try to make sure Deshaun Watson is ready before rolling him out there. The hard question here is this: If the team struggles out of the gate and starts off poorly offensively, does the team put in Watson right away?

  39. bencoates57 says: May 9, 2017 8:21 PM

    Has Weeded ever won as a starter? Wasn’t he on like an 0 and 12 streak or something?

  40. TheBrownswillstinkagain says: May 9, 2017 8:24 PM

    And this is why teams like the Texans, the Browns, the Rams never win anything. Youre going to sit a 1st round QB behind sone scrub.

    O’Brien is a dunce to the 10th power.

    Tom Savage might as well be Fred Savage at QB

  41. stexan says: May 9, 2017 8:46 PM

    Actually, Weeden has played very well in Houston when he’s been called on.
    He had a horrible string going in 2015 in Dallas, they cut him loose and he wound up in Houston. He got a start due to injury and a Ryan Mallet melt down, beat the Titans and looked good doing it.

  42. yodaddycrapper says: May 9, 2017 8:54 PM

    Doesn’t matter really with Savage or Watson on the field this year … The up and coming Jags will own the Texans this year. With Tom Coughlin back , a better coach riding the ship in Doug Marrone , Fournette at RB and more pieces added to an already stud Defense … It’s Jag Naion’s time to Rule !!!

  43. canedaddy says: May 9, 2017 10:31 PM

    Unless the Texans are idiots, they’ll play whoever gives them the best chance to win. It’s very hard for me to believe that’s Savage, who was drafted in 2014 and still has just as many NFL TD passes as Watson.

  44. htown1035 says: May 10, 2017 9:49 AM

    Take it with a grain of salt – right now on this very day it’s the case, but there’s no way Watson goes into the season as the 3rd starter. Everyone knows the 3rd starter gets NO reps during the week and is in charge of the scout team, and there’s no way if they truly wanted him to learn the offense that he wouldn’t get any reps at all.

  45. diehardfootballfan says: May 12, 2017 7:07 PM

    Coach O’Brien is always playing head games with his offense. It’s some kind of sick game he plays with his QB’s. He’s the problem AND the reason the Texans will never get to the super bowl. His ego takes precedent over the team spirit. Get this quarterback, get THIS quarterback. Truly, he doesn’t know what the hell he is doing.

  46. dee1006 says: May 13, 2017 11:53 AM

    guyjuneguyjune says:
    May 9, 2017 3:23 PM
    Teams like Houston have only a window of opportunity over 2 or 3 years to get to the Super-Bowl. Houston was head-faked by Jones and Romo and got rid of Osweiler. They’re not going to the promised land with Savage and they know it. They dumped Osweiler too fast and even the owner didn’t know it. Osweiler will be a massive up-grade for Cleveland this year. If he succeeds the Texans will look like….not so smart.
    _______________________________________

    Osweiler was not a good fit for the Texans. He could not take the hard QB coaching, and he clashed with the coaching staff. He cost George Godsey his job (he was a good QB coach, not so much OC though).

    Maybe Os will succeed with the Browns. But the Texans were smart to dump him.

    Savage was a better QB than Osweiler in camp, and later on the field. I just hope Savage can stay healthy. If not, then Watson will hit the field before Weeden. Weeden is ‘insurance’ as a backup, and has success in O’Brien’s system as the backup, but that is all he is – a backup.

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