Matt Leinart, The Time is Now
Patrick D. Starr
The Houston Texans at the start of the bye week got some unfortunate news on starting quarterback Matt Schaub, who looks like he will be sidelined indefinitely with a lis franc injury to his right foot. With that the Texans will be turning to the 6 year pro, Matt Leinart, to lead them to the teams first ever AFC Crown.
Matt Leinart came to the Texans in the 2010 season to become the team's third quarterback in a one year deal after the Arizona Cardinals released him for then starter Derek Anderson. The start of the 2011 season Leinart was a free agent and it was rumored that he was headed to Seattle Seahawks to join his former college coach Pete Carroll. He surprised everyone after the Seahawks signed Tavaris Jackson to a two-year deal, and returned to Houston with a two-year deal of his own. (2 years for $5.5 million/$3.7 million in the 1st year)
Leinart said this on Twitter about his return to Houston after resigning,
"I am excited to be a Texan. Ultimately, I had to do what was best for me at this point. People can question the decision, but it was the right one for me. I love the organization, coaching staff and my teammates. Excited to get back to Reliant tomorrow and get back to work.”
The cards may seem stacked against Leinart from succeeding, but a he could not be asking to come into any better situation than the one the Texans are in now. All of the responsibility is not going to fall on Leinart to win with his arm, but to help manage the game much like Schaub has been doing during this 4 game win streak. With a defense and a solid running game, the Texans STILL have the make up to get to the playoffs and make a run. Will there be a drop off, only time will tell, and the Texans have two full weeks to prepare Matt Leinart for the most important 6 game stretch in franchise history.
It is crazy to write the Texans off because of one player is hurt in this case Matt Schuab. If you were going to write the Texans off everyone should have done that when Mario Williams, Andre Johnson, or Danieal Manning went down. The team is still alive and fighting despite all of the injuries, and to think that the Texans and Leinart are going to let an opprotunity like this slip through their hands may be all the non-believers talking. Expect the Texans to turn it up a notch if anything these coming weeks.
Leinart has the opportunity to silence all his past critics in Arizona and write a new chapter in his professional career to help lead a franchise to their first ever post season appearance. There are plenty of pieces on this Houston team to make the dream season to continue, and Leinart has a chance to be a big part of the continued success.