The Texans have opted to give 2021 third-round quarterback Davis Mills the keys to the offense for 2022. As the team wraps its offseason program with a mandatory minicamp, Mills and coach Love Smith talked about the quarterback’s development.
“I feel like I’m at a good spot,” Mills told reporters. “Obviously there’s still a lot of room to grow, but more confident, more comfortable out there with the offense and my teammates around me. Ready to keep progressing and head into the season.”
He said his experience from his rookie season is making him more confident and comfortable. “Just having experience and being able to make fast, smart decisions and protect the football,” Mills said. “I think experience is a big factor in how my game progressed through the last season. These reps I’ve gotten in this offseason are extremely valuable and I’m excited to keep progressing. I still have a lot to prove to myself and to my teammates to go out there and win games, but we’re all excited for it, and I want to keep moving forward.”
Last year, Tyrod Taylor got the bulk of the reps in the offseason and training camp, as Mills was learning the ropes. This year, Mills is holding the rope.
“I still have a lot to prove,” Mills said. “Got to go out there and win the job each and every day and put my best foot forward each and every day out here at practice. It’s exciting and I want to keep proving that to the guys.”
He’s proving it to his coach, with a work ethic that will help him get to his ceiling, where that may be.
“We feel good about him, improvement,” Smith told reporters. “If you go through I think maybe 38, 37 days or so we’ve gone through of actual work here, and you’re a guy like Davis who’s the first guy in the building and the last guy to leave, he’s gotten a lot of reps, a lot of instructions. I’ve seen him make some of the type of plays we know he’s capable of making.”
As a rookie, Mills appeared in 13 games and started 11. He generated 2,664 passing yards, threw 16 touchdown passes, and had 10 interception. He completed 66.8 percent of his throws.
The Texans do indeed seem to be intent on entrusting the job to Mills. There has been scant chatter about Houston adding a veteran to potentially supplant Mills. They could have easily asked for Baker Mayfield as part of the Deshaun Watson trade, for example. They didn’t.
Would they pursue Mayfield or 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo if either or both players are cut? There has been no indication that they would — which means that they’re not interested. Or that G.M. Nick Caserio is doing his best to feign lack of interest until one or the other, or both, are free and clear.