Reporting Fred Davis
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Just when I thought the Texans season couldn’t get any worse… Boom. Matt Schaub proves me wrong.
I called the Baltimore loss a franchise-deflating loss given the manner in which the Texans lost and everything that was on the line for the Texans leading up to the game. I had no idea Schaub and Kubiak had a letdown even more Herculean up their sleeve with the Jaguarian-like offensive production of the second half that led to the SECOND franchise deflating loss – IN CONSECUTIVE WEEKS.
Let’s call this season what it is – on the verge of monumental collapse. Is that hyperbole? I don’t think so. Your defense held one of the three best teams in the NFL to THIRTEEN POINTS in regulation and you still lost – despite holding a 17-point lead at halftime. Everyone BUT your mediocre quarterback is taking the blame for what happened and the rhetoric-spin machine on Kirby looks like it’s has Bill O’Reilly calling the shots.
Guess what – It’s time for the Schaub to stop here.
Matt Schaub has taken this team as far as he’s going to take it. His ceiling is capped. His upside plateaued during the 2009-10 seasons. Maybe it’s that cold-hearted lisfranc who has him by the you know what – whatever it is – the idea of Matt Schaub taking this team any further than it has the last two seasons evaporated when a jubilant Seattle Seahawk team was gift-wrapped a victory by #8.
It’s time for the grizzled vet, the Texan if there ever was one, who has maroon blood coursing through his veins, Super Bowl rings at his disposal, innovative offensive schemes and plays keeping him up at night… It’s time for Gary Kubiak to make a change at quarterback.
Wait, that’s all true isn’t it? Well, maybe not the innovative part, but the rest is true. Unfortunately, he won’t. And that will be his undoing and this Texan team will continue to be the “woulda-coulda-shoulda” of the NFL.
Your QB of the future is on this roster. Problem is, he hasn’t dressed all season.
Case Keenum, everybody, Case Keenum.
The time is now.
We know what Schaub is, so I’m done belaboring that point. As for TJ Yates, I like him, he has as many playoff wins as Schaub and more mobility and arm strength, but he’s really not that much better than Schaub. Not to mention, I have a problem with a guy who until Case pushed him for his job, seemed pretty content being the backup quarterback. I don’t see a guy who has that ‘it’ factor to lead a team to the promise land. Maybe I’m wrong, but I was never overwhelmed by what I saw from him in training camp. Is he a good stop-gap? No doubt. Is he the solution long-term? No way.
Keenum on the other hand, well, he has that ‘it’ factor.
There’s a presence about him on the field that Schaub and Yates wish they had. To think this kid went from the practice squad to battling for the #2 position over the course of an offseason – and played well enough to earn it – tells you what this kid is made of.
He threw for a million yards in college, and I know it was Conference USA, but even against the big boys, he put up big numbers save for a game against Oregon his freshman year. The big moment doesn’t scare him. You can’t say that about your current starting signal-caller.
Keenum gives you mobility, opens up your playbook and gives this offense a dimension it’s NEVER had during the Kubiak era – a quarterback who can run coming off the boot. Imagine that, all that green grass in front of the quarterback and rather than checking down or throwing it away, he actually runs with it…? What is this, 2013?
I know we’ve only seen what he did in the preseason, but are you going to tell me that Geno Smith or EJ Manuel who have led their teams with less than half the talent the Texans have are better quarterbacks than Keenum..? I say no.
The NFL is a QB league folks, and those who have good quarterbacks advance, while those who are predictable and make mistakes in big moments look a lot like Matt Schaub and waste what could be a magical season for a city starving for football success.
There’s a future Hall of Fame QB who came off the bench in his second season and in his first three games threw for a combined 300 yards, no touchdowns and no interceptions. The team went 1-2 in those three starts. His team was 1-3 at that point.
The guy was Tom Brady.
Am I suggesting Case Keenum can be Tom Brady..? No. Am I suggesting it’s possible that a second year quarterback with certain intangibles and an incredible work ethic can quarterback a team with a great core and lead them to a Super Bowl…? Absolutely.
Call me crazy. That’s fine. I don’t mind. Hell, I’ve got a damn Astros tattoo because they lost 100 games. But if you think this Texan team is getting any better with #8 or #13, you’re sadly mistaken. This team will probably be 3-4 at the bye, and contrary to popular belief, the schedule doesn’t soften up as much as others want you to believe. Sure you have the Raiders and Jags twice. Great. You also have the Colts twice, the Patriots, Broncos and Titans on the road to close the season. If Schaub is your quarterback, hello 9-7 or 8-8. Goodbye playoffs and let the ‘what if’s’ begin.
Schaub isn’t going to be back next season. If he is, Rick Smith has some serious explaining to do. Schaub is a finished product here in Houston and the dynamic with he and Kubiak is good enough to beat your middle-rung to good teams while always finding a way to lose to the best teams. And there is nothing in either man’s DNA to suggest that’s changing in 2013.
Yeah, Kubiak has coached on Super Bowl winning teams, but his QBs were Hall of Famers who were, wait for it – MOBILE. There is still time left for this to be a magical season, and I can’t even begin to think of the dizzying media coverage should Keenum do what I think he’s capable of – righting this Texan Ship.
“Keenum works magic for second Houston team” or “From Conference USA to being the talk of the USA”… Whatever it is… This season is headed for a nightmare finish if Schaub remains the quarterback, but the fairytale ending is still possible… And there’s even a lucky #7 who can pull it off.