The Texans have had arguably the best defense over the last few years. Houston seems to have the type of defense that can win them a championship, they just can’t seem to get an offense to help get them there.
Time is ticking for the Texans and with star defender, J.J. Watt having injury problems lately, the window seems to be closing. The offense has to get better and match the efforts of the defense if this team wants a shot at a title.
Houston Texans Should Sign Colin Kaepernick
Not The Best History of Quarterbacks
For whatever reason, the Texans just can’t seem to find a groove with their offense. David Carr was the Texans very first quarterback and he was mediocre, at best. Although he didn’t have the defense, Carr still couldn’t manage to get the Texans to the playoffs.
Matt Schaub replaced Carr and had some pretty decent seasons with the Texans. Schaub had a decent running game with Arian Foster and a solid defense. Schaub did manage to get the Texans into the playoffs twice in his time in Houston but could only beat the Cincinatti Bengals.
After Schaub’s departure, Ryan Fitzpatrick took the helm for a brief period before being replaced by Ryan Mallett. Neither quarterback got the job done and the following year, Bill O’Brien couldn’t seem to pick between Brian Hoyer and Mallet. Neither quarterback performed well and an injury-prone Foster offered no assistance to the struggling offense.
Last but, well I guess it would be least, is Brock Osweiler. What can be said about Osweiler’s year in Houston? Severely overpaid meets depressingly underperformed. Although Tom Savage also saw a little more time on the field, he wasn’t all that impressive and injuries cut his time short. Quarterback is definitely an issue needing to be addressed.
Rookie or Veteran?
The Texans are now faced with a very important decision to make. After the embarrassing Brock Osweiler experiment, the front office has to be walking on egg shells. The next move Houston makes at quarterback needs to be a productive one.
So, do the Texans put their faith in a rookie quarterback next season? Sure, they can draft a guy like Patrick Mahomes II in the first or second round. Is Mahomes NFL ready though? How can we know if he will be the next Matt Ryan or Joe Flacco and have success right out of the gate?
What if Houston drafts the next JaMarcus Russell or Tim Tebow? The rookie quarterback isn’t meant to come into an NFL team and make a change his first year. Yes, there have been some exceptions but realistically, a rookie quarterback needs to spend his first year, at least, learning the system and developing his skills.
Ideally, the Texans need to draft a quarterback for the future but there’s still a need for a solid veteran. If Houston can bring in a veteran quarterback, they have a better chance at winning now and allowing the rookie to develop and, eventually take over.
With Tony Romo announcing his retirement, the free agent market for quarterbacks has become extremely thin. Right now, the options are Jay Cutler, Colin Kaepernick, Robert Griffin III, and Ryan Fitzpatrick. With Fitzpatrick already having a shot with Houston and with his play declining, I’m going to take him out of the equasion.
Griffin is way too injury prone to consider and, in his NFL career, has yet to play a full 16 game season. If Griffin could stay healthy, I would have no problem with Houston bringing him in as a transition quarterback but he’s just too risky.
Should They Take Cutler?
Jay Cutler has been right on the heels of Tony Romo as far as criticism goes. Cutler is notorious for throwing it to the other team. Cutler will also be coming into his 12th season and finished last season with a shoulder injury. Had the shoulder injury been on his opposite shoulder, it wouldn’t be as concerning but, of course, it was his throwing shoulder.
Cutler turns 34 in a few weeks and hasn’t been very impressive in his time with Chicago. In his eight years as a Bear, Cutler has missed games due to injury in five of those years. Cutler’s injuries are mostly due to the fact that he takes way too many sacks. Cutler isn’t very mobile and when the pocket collapses, he goes down and, a lot of times, loses the ball.
Another issue with Cutler is that he has been benched for poor play previously. Not only has Cutler been benched before, there were speculations that many of the Bears players weren’t happy about John Fox keeping him as the starter.
Cutler is 51-49 as a starter for the Bears and only led them to the playoffs once. Cutler has one win and one loss in his postseason career with Chicago. Eight years with a team and only one postseason appearance is not something the Texans should be after. Even Osweiler took them to the playoffs!
Should They Take Kaepernick?
Kaepernick, on the other hand, is 28-30 as a starter for the 49ers. In his first two years as a starter, Colin Kaepernick led the 49ers to the playoffs, including a Super Bowl appearance in his first year. Kaepernick led the 49ers to a huge comeback victory against the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC Championship game after being down by 17 points. Kaepernick again led his team to a comeback in the Super Bowl after being down by 22 points to the Ravens but eventually lost by three points.
Colin Kaepernick came up just short of making back to back Super Bowl appearances in 2014 and his head coach, Jim Harbaugh, left the team to become head coach of the University of Michigan. After Harbaugh left, the 49ers hired Jim Tomsula and it seemed like the team imploded immediately. Their leading receiver, Michael Crabtree, was released and three of their defensive starters retired, including Patrick Willis.
After one season, Tomsula was fired and the 49ers decided to hire Chip Kelly to be their new head coach. Almost immediately, Colin Kaepernick requested a trade that would not be fulfilled. While he didn’t lose any playing time over it, Kaepernick did have a lingering knee injury that seemed to limit him during 2016.
Now, like Cutler, there are some obvious issues with Kaepernick. Both Tomsula and Kelly benched Kaepernick for poor play. Kaepernick has had quite a few sacks as well although most of his are from outside of the pocket.
And of course, there’s the issue with his kneeling all of 2016 in protest. Without going too far into the subject because it’s extremely controversial I will say that I see both sides to the issue. It can be a distraction, even though Kaepernick has already said he will not kneel next season.
The Bottom Line
Kaepernick lost some respect from a lot of players and fans, including Texans players and fans. However, he gained some respect from players and fans as well. With the rise of domestic violence charges, Kaepernick’s peaceful protest seems permissible for NFL teams right now.
With the NFL Draft steadily approaching, we will soon find out which route the Texans decide to take. Either way, whoever they decide to place under center has got to be better than the Brock Osweiler experiment.
Colin Kaepernick is the better option. Kaepernick has shown he can be successful with a good defense to support him. Houston also has better receivers to offer for Kaepernick to throw to. If Lamar Miller can have another 1,000 yard season, Kaepernick has a chance to lead this offense to success.