Oct 23, 2022; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Houston Texans chief executive officer D. Cal McNair reacts during the game against the Las Vegas Raiders at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Cal McNair: Stroud will “earn his spot”
Speaking to the media Monday before the Houston Texans 20th Annual Charity Golf Classic, Texans Chairman and CEO Cal McNair expressed that second overall pick C.J. Stroud will not have anything handed to him.
When asked what Stroud’s role on the team would be and the prospects of him being the starter, McNair replied:
“Well, I think that’s up to him and how he plays, and the coaches and how they see him, so he’ll earn his spot, wherever that is, and he’ll feel like he’s earned it, and the team will know he’s earned wherever he winds up, so we’re looking forward to that.”
While it is not a surprise that Stroud will be asked to earn his spot, it would be a colossal surprise if Stroud were not the starting quarterback for the Texans to start the season, barring injury.
Texans fans were overwhelmingly excited about the prospects of the team finally having a true successor to Deshaun Watson, and Stroud’s collegiate career was tremendously successful.
McNair also expressed optimism for the team’s improvement this season, declaring:
“We think we had a good offseason. We’re ready to get all the guys on the grass. The rookies are coming in end of this week. We’ll see how they earn their spots, so it’s going to be fun.”
When pressed about whether he forced general manager Nick Caserio to pick Stroud, McNair was adamant in his denial.
“Hannah and I don’t make the picks. We’ll make it clear there. We have a great group of scouts led by Nick [Caserio] and James Lippert, and they did a lot of work on the draft board, and then they followed that on draft day, and they moved up when they saw the value was there and moved back.”
We will likely never know the truth, but until we hear otherwise, taking McNair’s denials at face value is all we can do.