HOUSTON (CBS Houston) – So it seems as though all parties got their wish. Matt Schaub was traded to the Oakland Raiders on Friday for a 6th round draft choice. So now, Houston Texan fans no longer have to complain about anticipating or expecting Schaub to be their quarterback.
The Houston Texans organization is probably feeling less pressure today knowing they will realize cap relief in 2015, and quarterback Matt Schaub needed out of Houston, maybe not for his personal life, but certainly for his professional life.
There’s very little chance that he would have been able to survive in Houston psychologically unless a magical turnaround occurred if he had been the starter in 2014. And frankly, based on the deficiencies and changes with this current team, a magical turnaround was highly unlikely.
While Schaub enjoyed three seasons of more than 4000 yards passing and only two seasons of ten wins or more during his seven seasons as the starter, it wasn’t enough to put the Texans over the top. Following the 12-4 2013 finish, albeit disappointing the way it ended, the organization was expected to take that next step and at least compete for an AFC Championship.
The results are in and the 2013 season was a failure after the Texans posted a 2-14 record. Events such as the halftime collapse of Head Coach Gary Kubiak during the home game against the Indianapolis Colts was a sign of a struggling franchise and the temporary weakened condition of a coach who put his health on the line for a team that didn’t quite reciprocate the ideals of the Head Coach.
Following a tumultuous season, Gary Kubiak was fired by owner Bob McNair and change became inevitable. Most of the coaching staff was released as well. But it didn’t take long for Kubiak to land on his feet as the new offensive coordinator in Baltimore, the same position he held in Denver for 10 seasons and two Super Bowls.
We’re not fully sure why the magic didn’t work here in Houston. But, if you want to point to teams that have won Super Bowls, it would probably be a good idea to compare quarterbacks. But, be diligent because that’s probably only 50% of your answer. Remember that defense wins championships. Offenses score points.
Remember the incident during the game against the Raiders, the very team that traded for Schaub? This incident involved a little disagreement, public mind you, between Matt Schaub and Andre Johnson on the sidelines following an incomplete pass that shot down their chances of a possible comeback? This was Andre’s response following the game regarding that play.
“I messed up,” says Andre Johnson. “I’ll just put it like that. I messed up.”
There was no need to apologize since we knew, but wasn’t exactly sure, who was really at fault. So now, Schaub gets a new start with a team that’s expected to compete, just not sure how good the Raiders will be in 2014. Schaub will make $11 million anyway win or lose and quite frankly, it probably wouldn’t be worth the time concerning yourself with the Raiders unless, of course, you’re a Raider’s fan. The concern in the City of Houston will be the Texans and how they move forward.
The Texans have their backup quarterback in place after signing former Buffalo Bill and Tennessee Titan quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick to a two-year deal with $7.5 million. By the way, with Schaub getting $11 million in 2014, the Texans catch a break in 2015, which for Rick Smith, puts a feather in his cap.
Next up for the Texans is deciding what to do with that first pick. The NFL draft takes place in New York City May 8th. They need a quarterback but they also have other needs and getting two draft picks in the first round would add ANOTHER feather in the cap of Texans GM Rick Smith. He needs lots of feathers right now.
Desperate times call for desperate measures. But, how those desperate times are handled determine the measure of a man. Keep in mind Rick Smith came through with the Raiders deal. Hold your thoughts for now and let him work!
Meanwhile, it seems as though the Texans have, maybe, three quarterbacks on their radar; Blake Bortles, Johnny Manziel, and Teddy Bridgewater. There are those who would take Manziel with the first pick and that’s understandable based on his skill set. Teddy Bridgewater reportedly had a ‘disappointing’ pro day while Blake Bortles of Central Florida impressed.
Problem is, young quarterbacks at this stage will all respond with the “dear in headlight” look against NFL defenses until they learn to navigate their way through the NFL. Therefore, if you’re the Texans it would be wise to trade down, if possible, and get two for one. Taking a quarterback is the right thing to do, Captain Obvious. But, the concept of value proposition surrounds competitive advantage.
The Texans have the first pick of the 2014 NFL Draft. Therefore, they have the competitive advantage. Their course of action should be to exercise that competitive advantage to their benefit.
The next move is on the Texans.