During the Week 2 loss to the Browns, Texans QB Tyrod Taylor injured his hamstring leaving backup rookie QB Davis Mills to play the entire second half. Mills started off rocky, found his way for a little bit, then finished off rocky again. His performance wasn't enough to get the win, but, he answered the call as best he could under the circumstances.
Now that the game is over, there is a lingering question at the Quarterback spot. What do you do?
The hamstring injury that Taylor suffered, well, those injuries are not easy or quick to come back from. He will likely be out at minimum a couple weeks. With that in mind, the Texans have a couple options to answer their Quarterback question.
Option #1: Keep starting Davis Mills
This is the most likely option, at least right away. The Texans next game is this Thursday night, at home, against the Carolina Panthers. Mills has got his first taste of NFL experience and has used David Culley's and Tim Kelly's scheme in regular season action. He'll get a short week of practice, but, the time would be now to see what it is you have in Davis Mills. You drafted him with your first pick in the draft for a reason. You need to see what you have in him.
Option #2: Activate and start Jeff Driskel
This is probably the least likely to happen. Actually, no it's not. I'll get to that in a minute. Anyhow, he wasn't activated and isn't above Mills in the depth chart for a reason. Sure he may have more career NFL time and experience than Mills. But, if the team thought he was better than Mills, he would have at least suited up. I'd imagine he'll suit up now only because they need him to.
Option #3: Activate and start Deshaun Watson
Oh boy, this is the complicated option. If you're Nick Caserio and David Culley, do you stick to your guns and keep Watson deactivated or do you tell him, "We're paying you $10 million to sit home, so suit up because you're going in."
Don't get me wrong, I totally get why they wouldn't play him. We all know about the lawsuits and ongoing investigation with Watson and the masseuses. Yes, the NFL hasn't officially put him on the Commissioner's Exempt List, but still, if you wanted to stick to your guns because you feel like you have a moral obligation to do so, then I understand that.
On the other hand, this Texans team, they're not as bad as we all thought they would be. If Tyrod Taylor had not gotten hurt and played the full game, I think the Texans would have beaten the Browns and started the season 2-0. The defense only started to fall apart after Taylor got hurt. I understand why though. That kind of blow to a team is demoralizing. Especially when you have a team that many are picking to be in the AFC championship game on the ropes. The offense has showed they can play and the defense has shown that as well. If Watson suddenly comes in and plays, this could dramatically turn this team around and, with how they've shown they'll play for coach David Culley, they could make some noise in the division. Especially with the rest of the division not being as good as advertised. The Texans currently sit in first place after Week 2. I'm writing this before the end of the Titans Seahawks game, but, even if the Titans win, the Texans would still be at least tied for first place.
This one would be entirely up to GM Nick Caserio. I don't see him activating Watson. However, if you want to win and are willing to put the morals to the side (the NFL has clearly done that by not doing anything about Watson yet) then you need to activate him immediately. We'll see what happens. As of now though, I expect this is the least likely option to happen.
Option #4: Sign and start Cam Newton
This option is interesting. Cam Newton is a former MVP, has been to a Super Bowl, and can run an offense. He also happens to be a free agent. The Patriots cut him right before the season opener to avoid any distraction it could have on their rookie QB Mac Jones.
Let's say Mills starts on Thursday night and it goes bad. At that point, with there still being a chance to save the season because it's still early in the season, would you go out and sign Newton? He does have plenty of veteran leadership and experience. He still says that he's better than the other 32 starting QBs out there so he definitely has the energy, will and motor to go out and play. He would have to learn the offense but, I don't think that would be that much of an issue. He wants to play, he can still play, so maybe, sign him and see what he can do.
If this does happen, I doubt it would happen this week on account of the Texans playing on Thursday Night Football in a couple of days. Time will tell on this one.
It will be interesting to see what the Texans do the rest of the way. If they want to actively go out there and win, they need to make a decision on the long-term future and they need to do it fast.