HOUSTON — The 1-8-1 Texans will try again for their second win of the season this weekend when they take on the Dolphins in Miami (12 p.m. Sunday on KHOU 11). And the questions fans are asking is, "Who will start at quarterback for Houston?"
If you’re thinking you’ll get that answer from Texans’ head coach Lovie Smith, think again. He said in his news conference after practice Wednesday that if he’s making a switch from the struggling Davis Mills to backup Kyle Allen, he won’t say it during the week.
“I do not announce who’s starting through the week,” Smith said. “We have a starting lineup, the last one that we have. And when it changes we’ll let you know, but during the week, of course we’re not going to announce anything like that. I think that would give the opponent an advantage, so our starting lineup, as far as you’re concerned, and I would have said the same thing three weeks ago, it’s the same one until told otherwise.”
And while Smith didn’t say he was making a change at quarterback, by not saying that Mills will be under center Sunday may be an indication that we’ll see Allen, according to KHOU 11’s Matt Musil.
Musil tweeted, “It’s reasonable to think that if Lovie is staying with Davis Mills, he would have said so today. Not naming Mills as his starting QB pretty much points to Kyle Allen starting at Miami.”
So far this season, Mills is 203 of 328 for 2,144 yards. He’s thrown 11 touchdowns and 11 interceptions and has a QB rating of 78.1. He’s coming off a game against the Commanders in which he was 19 of 33 for 169 yards with two interceptions – one a pick-six – and no touchdowns. Houston lost that game 23-10.
At practice on Wednesday, Musil noted that Allen and Mills were getting equal reps at quarterback.
This all follows Monday’s news conference, at which Smith did hint at some changes after a poor performance against Washington. When asked if Mills gave the team the best chance to win, this was Smith’s response.
“That’s a question I’m asked quite a bit and I don’t know how to answer it anymore except for I think he’s grown too, since the early part. It’s pretty hard to talk about how much somebody has grown after yesterday. What I’m going to say, yesterday, if you look at the game from the quarterback play, we didn’t play as well as we needed to in the first half.”
But he didn't put the blame squarely on his starting quarterback.
“You say it starts with quarterback,” Smith said. “But no, it starts up front is where it starts and today with that type of pressure, I don’t know how many quarterbacks could have had success.”
And on Allen…
“Kyle (Allen) can make all the throws,” Smith said. “He has a history of good play in the NFL. He’s a veteran that’s been in situations, gets rid of the ball quickly. There’s a lot of things to like about what Kyle has done. When he played in the preseason, with the limited amount of time he had, I thought he did a pretty good job.”
We’ll have to wait until this weekend to see if there’s a change at quarterback for the Texans…or at any other position.