Brock Osweiler has led the fewest touchdown drives of any starting quarterback this season. In the Texans‘ Monday night loss at Denver, the former Broncos signal-caller posted one of the lowest single-game yards-per-attempt figures in modern NFL history.
O’Brien shot down that notion on Tuesday, per Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle, insisting he hasn’t considered benching Osweiler.
It’s no surprise that O’Brien is resistant to change. More than any organization in the league, the Texans invested heavily in their offense this past offseason, using salary-cap space and draft capital to acquire Lamar Miller, Will Fuller, Braxton Miller and offensive-line help.
Osweiler was supposed to be the pièce de résistance, coaxed away from Denver and billed as the franchise savior with $37 million in guarantees. After hearing raves from O’Brien and general manager Rick Smith at Osweiler’s introductory press conference in March, venerable Houston Chronicle columnist John McClain hailed the new quarterback’s arrival as the biggest free agent signing in Houston since 1984 when the Oilers signed CFL legend Warren Moon away from the Edmonton Eskimos.
For all of those resources poured into the offense, though, Osweiler’s attack has been a severe downgrade from the talent-starved smoke-and-mirrors show run by Brian Hoyer last season. The new quarterback has yet to demonstrate the accuracy, field vision, pocket movement and delivery of a franchise player. Of the 34 starting QBs graded by Pro Football Focus this season, he ranks dead last.
To this point, Osweiler has the look of a $72 million boondoggle. Considering the magnitude of the investment, O’Brien will give him ample opportunity to prove that’s a premature assessment of his value.