Every NFL quarterback remembers his first successful professional pass, but Texans rookie C.J. Stroud’s first completion was extra memorable.
Stroud, the No. 2 pick in this year’s draft, got the start under center for Houston’s opening game against the Ravens on Sunday. Offensive coordinator Bobby Slowik wasted no time before letting Stroud show off his skills, calling a pass play on the Texans’ first offensive play. It was supposed to be a screen pass to Robert Woods, but it didn’t go according to plan.
Ravens linebacker Roquan Smith charged through the line on a blitz and leaped up to swat Stroud’s pass out of the air. Luckily, the ball landed right in arms of Stroud. Officially, that goes down in the box score as a pass and catch for Stroud, so his first NFL pass attempt was a completion to himself.
C.J. Stroud completes his first NFL pass attempt... to C.J. Stroud. pic.twitter.com/kk0IME3BVt— Eleven Warriors (@11W) September 10, 2023
(Here are a couple more angles of the play.)
Texans fans have high hopes for Stroud, and the result of his first NFL pass could be a sign of big things to come. Do you know who also completed his first NFL pass to himself? Hall of Famer Brett Favre. In his first appearance for the Packers, on Sept. 13, 1992, Favre had a pass batted into the air and land back in his arm for the first of his 6,300 career completions. Stroud is only 6,272 shy of that number.