Making The Case For Brian Hoyer


As we head closer and closer towards training camp, many fans and media are speculative of who will win the starting job for the Houston Texans. On one hand, you have Ryan Mallett, the young gunslinger out of Arkansas who was buried behind Patriot legend Tom Brady. On the other, you have, well, Brian Hoyer.

Now many fans (myself included) have penciled in Mallett to win the gig because of his potential, and the fact that Hoyer isn’t the biggest star at QB in the NFL. Many people knock him for throwing 12 touchdowns to 13 interceptions last season, and completing less than 60% of his passes.

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So why would Hoyer be in such fierce competition with Mallett? Shouldn’t Hoyer obviously be the backup since he hasn’t been very productive in his career?

Well, one wrench in that assumption is that Hoyer is actually getting paid more than Mallett. So what does Bill O’Brien see in the former Cleveland QB that would give him confidence in his ability to start?

For one, Brian Hoyer isn’t as bad of a quarterback as his numbers from last season would seem to indicate. I mean, he played for Cleveland. How much could you actually expect out of the guy? I hadn’t even been born when the Browns last had a successful QB (minus that fluke season in 2007).

Hoyer was expected to carry the team, and was doomed to fail from the start. The Cleveland run game was entirely mediocre, and the only decent receiver Hoyer had to throw to was Andrew Hawkins. Even Josh Gordon flopped once he returned from suspension.

Hoyer will also have a fair chance to start because he’s already learned under O’Brien. Both Mallett and Hoyer were backups in New England for a bit while O’Brien was the quarterbacks coach. Mallett was in the system last year, but Hoyer should easily be able to catch up and recall the old system.

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Hoyer is also more experienced than Mallett. Mallet started all of two games last season, one of which he played through injured. Meanwhile, Hoyer started 12 games for the Browns last season, as well as 3 games the year before. Hoyer should be able to come in and handle the pressure put on him to win football games by the coaching staff (if he does end up starting).

Hoyer is also an beneficial add to the Texans’ quarterback room as he is younger than last year’s starter, Ryan Fitzpatrick, who was traded to the New York Jets earlier this offseason. Fitzy was always believed to be a short-term option for the Texans, but Hoyer still has a few more years that he could contribute to the team if he shows productivity.

Overall, while it may seem that Mallett has the upper hand in this QB battle, Hoyer will still give him a run for his money. Literally. The way the two QB’s salaries are set up, if one isn’t productive this year, they can be cut without penalty next year. Hopefully this will remain a close competition and give the coaching staff a lot to think about.

Next: 5 Things To Watch For In Houston Texans OTAs