With the Texans in a hole Thursdsay and playing poorly against what we previously thought was the worst team in the league, coach Gary Kubiak benched starting quarterback Case Keenum and inserted former starter Matt Schaub back into the lineup.
Almost instantly, the Texans offense began moving with efficiency and force, and Houston rallied back to within four points of Jacksonville. At one point, Schaub was completing 71.4 percent of his passes, and it seemed that the Texans were going to steal a win on the road.
(... And totally mess up trying to get the No. 1 draft pick for 2014, but that's another matter altogether ...)
Schaub, though, threw a game-sealing interception just before the 2-minute warning and then took a bad sack on the last play of the game, reminding us why he had been benched for Keenum earlier this year in the first place.
But that doesn't mean Schaub is done for the season as the team's starter.
"Yeah, we've got a lot of time,” Kubiak said when asked if Schaub could start vs. the Colts in Week 15. “We've got a lot of time between now and the next time we play. We'll take a look at a lot of things ...
“To me, he's been coming out every day with something to prove. Ever since we made the decision to play Case, Matt's been an unbelievable pro. In how he works, in how he goes about his business, in how he helps Case, in how he does everything -- I told y'all that. And what you see [Thursday] is that this guy, that's what he is. It's just unfortunate that we couldn't finish the deal.”
Still, why is Kubiak -- who almost certainly will be fired after this season -- mortgaging the possible future of Keenum as the franchise quarterback in order to play Schaub in games that will be irrelevant to the organization? I mean, what's the point?
For one, Kubiak called Schaub "a damn good player."
“That is what he is. … We have been playing a young guy, but Matt hasn't changed,” Kubiak said. “He works hard every day and is totally into everything we are doing. He's a dang good player and he is going to be. He has a lot more football left to play. I have a lot of confidence in him and you all know that and always have. He went in there showed he has bought into what is going on.”
Schaub finished the game by completing 17 of 29 passes for 198 yards, a touchdown and that back-breaking interception.
But Kubiak also maintained that Keenum struggled and Schaub gave the team the best chance to win.
Watching the game Thursday, it'd be tough not to agree with the coach. But for the Texans, it's also hard to rationalize why making Schaub the starter again would be good for the team or for its future.
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