After rookie quarterback C.J. Stroud led the Houston Texans to another wild victory last weekend, talk emerged of him being not only NFL Rookie of the Year but also a possible MVP candidate. For the second straight week, Stroud engineered a game-winning drive, this time in Cincinnati against the Bengals on Nov. 12.
Stroud, just 22, has emerged as a poised leader who’s earned the trust of his coaches and teammates. “The thing about C.J. is it’s the calm in the chaos,” said Texans head coach DeMeco Ryans. “He doesn’t waver. He’s confident that he’s going to make plays, and the moment isn’t too big for him.”
C.J. Stroud: God Gives Me Only What I Can Handle
After Sunday’s victory, C.J. Stroud was asked about that calm demeanor. “How do you find that?” a reporter asked at the QB’s post-game press conference. “Or how do you come up with that?”
That gave Stroud, an outspoken Christian, another opportunity to talk about his faith—and how God has been with him through life’s challenges. “For me, it’s a lot of prayer,” the QB began. “A lot of just knowing that God wouldn’t put anything on me that I can’t handle.” He continued, “I don’t deserve (God’s) grace and his mercy, but he still gives it to me, and I love him for that.”
Deflecting any personal credit, Stroud said, “It’s about (God) and his glory…I think God made me like that. I’ve been through a lot, not only in football but things that made me just kind of chill when everything is going crazy.” He added, “I thank God for putting that…in me, because that’s something that you need playing in this position, in this league.”
As ChurchLeaders has reported, Stroud’s father, a former pastor, began serving a 38-year prison sentence while Stroud, the youngest of four siblings, was in middle school. The family experienced financial hardships and housing insecurity as a result.
Rookie QB C.J. Stroud Trusts and Garners Trust
Next, C.J. Stroud praised his teammates and coaches, saying how “amazing” it is to trust them—and to have their trust in return. Defensive end Jonathan Greenard said of Stroud, “I never get down in the dumps because I know we have a quarterback like that.”
Stroud, a California native who played college football at Ohio State, said it was “a blessing to be back in Ohio,” calling it his “second home.” He also spoke highly of Sunday’s opponent, saying it was “an honor” to play against Bengals QB Joe Burrow.