Aaron Rodgers raves about “incredible” Houston Texans rookie QB CJ Stroud


Texans CJ Stroud
Rodgers likes what he's seeing from CJ Stroud. Photo by Logan Riely/ Getty Images.

Future Hall of Fame quarterback Aaron Rodgers made his weekly appearance on The Pat McAfee Show and discussed how impressed he is with Texans' rookie CJ Stroud.

Rodgers shares his thoughts on Stroud's ability to avoid interceptions while also throwing the ball all over the yard – as he's third in passing yards in the NFL currently.

And let's be honest, nobody has been better at throwing touchdowns and limiting interceptions than Aaron. So he can speak to this better than anyone.

How is CJ doing it?

Stroud is seemingly playing with Rodgers' motto in mind, “ball security is job security.”

Rodgers also praised Stroud for his clutch touchdown drive in the fourth quarter against the Falcons that gave the Texans the lead. Unfortunately, the defense couldn't keep Atlanta out of field goal range and cost Houston the game.

Aaron goes on to say that many people probably didn't expect Stroud and the Texans to win a couple of games and have success so early. He likes what head coach DeMeco Ryans is doing with his young team.

Be sure to check out the video above to watch Rodgers' full conversation about CJ Stroud and the Texans.

The video is set to start at the beginning of the Stroud discussion (12:30 mark). Enjoy!

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The Texans have a clear path to winning the Wild Card. Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images.

It's fun having meaningful December football in town. While the Texans' loss to Jacksonville means it would take a little holiday miracle for them to win the AFC South, snaring one of the three AFC Wild Card spots is right in front of them.

There are still six weeks of play remaining, but the AFC Division winners seem pretty clear. Miami has command of the East, Baltimore the North, Jacksonville the South, and as always Kansas City the West. If holding out hope that the Texans can overtake the Jaguars, crazy stuff happens, but that would be extra crazy. If the Texans win out to finish 12-5 (unlikely), the Jaguars still take the division by winning four of their last six games unless they lose to the lowly Titans. The Jags also have the Bengals, Panthers, and Buccaneers as should-be-wins. If the Texans post a nifty 5-1 closing stretch, the Jags need just go 3-3, again provided they beat the Titans.

So, the Texans' realistic focus is on a Wild Card. I'm sure DeMeco Ryans would say, “No, our entire focus is on the Broncos.” For the team, sure. The rest of us can take six games at a time. Ahead of the Texans now are the 7-4 Browns and Steelers. They are tied with the 6-5 Colts (technically behind them with Indy having beaten the Texans in the season opener) and Broncos.

The Texans have to finish ahead of at least two of the four. That the Texans control their destiny is false, because the whole point of destiny/fate/kismet is that they are beyond control. So let's say the dominoes are lined up for the Texans to knock over.
They already own the tiebreaker over the Steelers. The Broncos are here Sunday, the Browns play at NRG Stadium Christmas Eve. The Texans' regular season finale takes them to Indianapolis. Beating the Broncos and Colts should do the job, provided the Texans handle the Titans in their two upcoming meetings. That would assure the Texans at least 10 wins, with the Browns game and a date with the offensively offensive Jets both winnable matchups.

Of course there is the other side of the coin. Middle of the pack opponents view the Texans as a winnable matchup.
A loss to Denver and the Texans fall a game plus the tiebreaker back of the Broncos. After an atrocious 1-5 start to the Sean Payton coaching era, the Broncos head to Houston having ripped off five straight wins, throttling the Chiefs as one of them. However, four of the five wins happened in the Mile High City.

The Bronco offense is mediocre. Quarterback Russell Wilson is clearly over the hill. During the Broncos' win streak Wilson has thrown for more than 200 yards once. Quite a contrast to C.J. Stroud's active NFL rookie record streak of four straight 300 yard passing games. While “Let Russ Cook” is a thing of the past, during the win streak he is not messing up the meal. Over his last five games Wilson has thrown eight touchdown passes and zero interceptions.

In Wilson's heyday with the Seahawks, touch on the deep ball was one of his signatures. Delivering the goodies one might say (shoutout to Ciara!). The Broncos have a capable tandem of wide receivers in Courtland Sutton and Jerry Jeudy. Brenham native Sutton has been the better of the two and has eight touchdown catches, only Tyreek Hill (10) and Mike Evans (nine) have more TD grabs this season. The Texans' secondary has been toasted by the long ball week in and week out. A good deal of blame for that goes to the defensive backs but the Texans' too often effete pass rush is at least as big a component. A QB needs time for receivers to get deep. Most QBs generally get that time against the Texans. This explains why the Texans claimed underachieving defensive end Derek Barnett off the waiver wire after the Eagles cut him earlier this week. The 2017 first round pick missed almost all of 2022 after tearing an ACL in the season opener. In 2021 he played in 16 games and mustered all of two sacks. This season Barnett's playing time was scarce.

On the flip side, Texans' pass catchers won't have to worry about illegal hits from suspended safety Kareem Jackson. The 35-year-old former Texan is a standup guy, but while not thought of as a head hunter like safeties could be in days gone by (think ex-Broncos Steve Atwater and John Lynch) Jackson has been guilty of multiple hits clearly against today's rules. Earlier this season Jackson had a four game suspension reduced to two games on appeal, then in his first game back made another flagrantly illegal if not flat out dirty helmet-to-helmet hit. No reduction on appeal of this four game suspension. No Jackson versus the Texans Sunday.

Looking for more Texans coverage?

Texans on Tap is the weekly Texan-centric podcast I am part of alongside Brandon Strange and Josh Jordan. On our regular schedule a first video segment goes up Monday on the SportsMapTexans YouTube channel.

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