The biggest question for the Houston Texans to answer this offseason is who will be their starting quarterback when the season starts in September.
At this week’s NFL Scouting Combine, Texans general manager Rick Smith and head coach Bill O’Brien both through significant weight behind the belief that current free agent quarterback Ryan Mallett will be that player under center later this year.
Here’s what those Houston official shad to say as told in an article on NFL.com.
"“Smith and O’Brien didn’t come out and say it, but they sure sound like they want to continue to work with free-agent quarterback Ryan Mallett. This was a brain-trust lovefest, with both men lauding the progress Mallett showed before and after his season-ending pectoral injury. I asked O’Brien how disappointed he’d be if another team signed Mallett. ‘If somebody came in and got him?’ he replied in a way that made me briefly panic whether Mallett was actually still under contract. ‘I’d like to have him back.’"
Mallett played in three games for the Texans last season after being traded from the New England Patriots. A pectoral injury ended his season prematurely in late November. But apparently, the Texans’ front office saw enough from him to appear now to be set to try and re-sign him.
O’Brien, who coached Mallett in New England during his rookie year, certainly has a large say in that. The now fifth-year quarterback threw for 400 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions last season with Houston. His completion percentage of 54.7% was one of the lowest in the NFL.
But Mallett is the very definition of a “green” quarterback. Despite playing behind Patriots’ legendary quarterback Tom Brady for three seasons, the former third round pick out of Arkansas had only completed one pass in the regular season prior to coming to Houston.
The fact the Texans are possibly looking to him to be their answer at quarterback is in itself a bit of a Hail Mary.