Nope, Brock Osweiler Doesn't Look Like a Franchise QB

I've been able to watch three of the Texans' games so far this season, including Sunday's mess of a contest and, a preliminary judgment on Brock Osweiler can be made: he's not "the guy."

There are two main reasons: lack of accuracy and lack of ability to read and diagnose defenses.

First, the accuracy problem; this can be seen in two different aspects of quarterbacking and, if he cannot improve, should doom him to being a mediocre NFL QB, at best. It can be exemplified in his problems with two of his wide receivers, Will Fuller III and DeAndre Hopkins. First, the Fuller issue: deep accuracy.

A quarterback like Osweiler, in the Bill O'Brien offense, needs to hit some deep throws. At least two or three shots per game. Will Fuller III is the kind of player to take advantage of Osweiler's arm strength and the tight defenses the Texans' running game and short passing offense dictate. But Osweiler keeps overthrowing, underthrowing or just plain missing Fuller. Some of this can be attributed to the rookie WR not being on the same page with Osweiler or dropping a ball or two. But not all of them. In general, Osweiler lacks the deep accuracy of a QB he will be inevitably compared to, Joe Flacco of the Ravens. Unable to make teams pay deep, Osweiler ends up getting forced to check downs leading to last week's godawful 3.2 yards per attempt stat.

But it's worse than that. With DeAndre Hopkins, Osweiler has a different problem. Hopkins will catch some deep balls, but he's more of a ball placement receiver. Give him a good back shoulder throw or a slant route where he can get extension and he hauls the ball in. But, again, Brock Osweiler isn't getting the ball where it needs to go. He can't hit the tight windows needed to exploit Hopkins' talents.

Finally, add to the accuracy problem the fact that Osweiler isn't getting good reads on defenses and making the right audibles. He's missing open receivers and making bad calls on run audibles, though the later is less pronounced and has much to do with the offensive line as well.

Add it all up, and the Texans have a problem. Osweiler isn't even as capable as Brian Hoyer was of dinking and dunking with Hopkins and can't force defenses to respect the speed of players like Fuller and Braxton Miller. Sadly, if the Colts continue their mediocrity, this might still get the Texans a division win, narrowly. But, few observers at this point would judge the Texans to have much hope of making it past a first round playoff game. That's not what $72 million (or even $37, if you read the contract more carefully) is supposed to buy you. Thus the AFC South continues to be an afterthought as a division for predicting what happens in January and onward.