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ESPN Analyst Believes Ohio State Buckeyes QB C.J. Stroud Is Top 10 NFL Passer

C.J. Stroud could end up being one of the top quarterbacks in the NFL following his performance against the Pittsburgh Steelers

Is former Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud already a top-10 passer in the NFL? A fellow former No. 2 pick thinks the Ex-Buckeyes star fits the criteria. 

ESPN analyst and former Heisman winner Robert Griffin III posted on social media Monday following the Houston Texans' 30-6 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers that Stroud not only is the future of the organization but is making the case for being one of the league's best passers through four weeks into his NFL career. 

"CJ Stroud isn't just the Texans' franchise quarterback," Griffin, the former Baylor quarterback drafted back in 2012 said on X, formerly known as Twitter. "He is a TOP 10 QB in the NFL already. The numbers back it up, the film backs it up and he passes the eye test with FLYING COLORS."

Stroud, who started two seasons in Columbus, is on pace to throw for a franchise-record 5,000 yards and 25 touchdowns as a rookie. He's posted two 300-yard passing performances at home and has yet to have a turnover through the quarter-mark of the season. 

Sunday's win over Pittsburgh cemented Stroud as the front-runner for Offensive Rookie of the Year. Despite completing 53.3 percent of his throws, the No. 2 pick also threw for 306 yards and two touchdowns, both coming to former Michigan receiver Nico Collins. 

Through four games, Stroud's 1,212 yards rank second in NFL history for the most passing yards for a rookie to begin a career, trailing only former No. 1 pick and 2015 MVP Cam Newton (1,386 yards). He also ranks third in most pass attempts (151) for a rookie without an interception.

"I think it's really cool when you see your work pay off a little bit, but for me, it's just the beginning," Stroud said postgame. "It's a blessing, but I want to do more. I want to be great at this game." 

Ohio State fans knew Stroud's transition from college to the pros would be seamless after throwing for over 8,100 yards and 85 touchdowns during his time under center. Even with a loaded arsenal at his disposal in Columbus, Stroud said he's built faster chemistry with Houston receivers than with Garrett Wilson, Chris Olave, Marvin Harrison Jr., and others. 

"Those guys work their tails off at practice," said Stroud. "If you see Tank's [Dell] numbers on the catapult during the week, you would be like, ‘Man, how is he going to play?’ That dude is running fast and putting a lot of extra mileage in. Same with Nico. And they're constantly working on their bodies, doing what they have to do to play."

Stroud leads all rookie quarterbacks in passing yards, passing touchdowns (six), and passer rating (100.6). Nationally, he ranks fourth in passing yards, ninth in passer rating, 10th in passing touchdowns, and 25th in completion percentage (62.3). 

Houston (2-2) is off to its best start since 2019 when it finished 10-6. Stroud and the Texans will travel to Atlanta to take on the Falcons this Sunday at 1 p.m.