In Fitz We Trust
The Texans are putting the trust of this new season under the watch of quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick. He is going to be counted on to get the ball out in a
hurry and into receivers’ hands in space. The new offensive system will be tailored to Fitzpatrick’s strengths and keep him as a true game manager. Not
blessed with a “big” NFL arm, Fitzpatrick has a quicker release than given credit for.
His quick release will need to be paired with quick decision making. Fitzpatrick was under a learning curve like the rest of the team when Mandatory
mini-camp ended, but there was enough of a progression from day one to see improvement. He showed he was developing a good rhythm with the receivers on the
field, which came to life in 7-on-7 drills.
The one thing that does not need to be overlooked is that Bill O’Brien will not ask Fitzpatrick to do things he is not good at. When snaps arrive versus
other teams, a better feel will be seen for what Fitzpatrick will be with the Texans.
Developments for the Backup
With the Texans trading T.J. Yates to the Atlanta Falcons, the quarterback group was reduced to Case Keenum and Tom Savage.
Case Keenum stays in Houston with some room still to grow, but how much is the question. He offers more mobility than the starter Fitzpatrick but he has to
make a concerted effort to read defenses more efficiently. His best throws are the deep ball outside the numbers to receivers on go routes, but the
intermediate throws are the ones that need to improve. If O’Brien can get Keenum to take any type of step in terms of improvement to becoming a better NFL
quarterback which could give a better feeling for the depth on the team.
As for Tom Savage, he was hand picked by the new staff and fits the mold on what is looked for in the quarterback position. Savage has a big arm, good
footwork and moxie that makes him an intriguing player. The game is still fast for him and in OTAs it was evident his hesitation throwing the football
caused plenty of incompletions.
When Savage wants to heat up throws to receivers, no quarterback on the roster has his velocity on the football. If Savage can pick up the offense quick
enough, he might get a chance during preseason to work with the first team. Right now, Savage should be looked at as the backup quarterback for the Texans
heading into 2014.