There's no reason to believe Cade Stover is going to push Dalton Schultz for playing time

Cade Stover has upside but let's stop the hype train before it goes off the rails.
Houston Texans Mandatory Minicamp
Houston Texans Mandatory Minicamp / Tim Warner/GettyImages

Dalton Schultz's return to the Houston Texans after a stellar first season was unexpected but greatly hoped for. He came here from the Dallas Cowboys, where he played for five years and put up 2,000 yards receiving and 17 touchdowns. He moved southeasternly to Houston during the 2023 offseason and in his first season with the Texans, put up 635 yards receiving and five touchdowns.

All while proving himself to be one of the better blocking tight ends in the league. Pro Football Focus had him at number 12 in their rankings, while Fox Sports had him at number 10. Sports Illustrated had him as high as number eight, and Pro Football Network had him at 12.

So he's a Top 10 tight end, roughly. For good reason. He's an exceptional all-around player. While there are better blockers and better receivers, it's hard to say there are many who are as good at both as Schultz is. Yet, despite that, Clutch Points thinks Schultz may be pushed by rookie Cade Stover.

Stover, a fourth-round pick out of Ohio State, has done nothing to make anyone think he'll be a good pro, let alone replace a top 10 tight end in year one. He could be very good, there's no doubt about that. However, he is already 24 years old, he's never had more than 576 yards receiving in a season and he's never scored more than five touchdowns in a single campaign either.

He's got potential. He's a big guy, who can run a 4.65 40-yard dash, and the hope is that he's a good blocker at the NFL level. That doesn't mention either his former experience at OSU with C.J. Stroud; the Texans franchise quarterback. The two were teammates and played together across 2022. While Stroud and Stover hooked up a few times, Stover wasn't a major factor in the passing game.

So it's unclear if Stover is going to be someone who has chemistry with Stroud at the pro level. One person we do know has chemistry with Stroud is Schultz. Since he returned to the Texans this offseason on a three-year, $36.5 million deal, it seems highly unlikely that the Texans would, let Stover push Schultz for playing time. While, two, that Stover would out-perform Schultz at any point in time.

Schultz is a Pro Bowl-caliber player, while Stover is a mid-round rookie who will, historically speaking, be lucky to get a second NFL contract, let alone replace Schultz anytime soon.