Texans Need to Keep an Eye on Roughnecks P.J. Walker
Patrick D. Starr
The Houston Texans are entering the 2020 season with only two quarterbacks under contract, Deshaun Watson and Alex McGough. Watson remains the unquestioned starter while McGough returns to the Texans on a reserve/futures contract for 2020. Both A.J. McCarron and Joe Webb are unrestricted free agents leaving their futures in limbo for the upcoming season.
With the XFL in full swing in Houston's backyard, the Roughnecks have started the season as one of the best quarterbacks in the league. Leading the Roughnecks to a 2-0 record and the most potent offenses in the XFL, quarterback P.J. (Phillip) Walker is turning heads to his style of play.
A little undersized measuring in at 5-11, Walker had success at Temple under current Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule. Walker holds all significant passing records with the Owls, and after his college career was over, he spent time with the Indianapolis Colts and their practice squad. Walker was an afterthought with the Colts, which lead him to sign with the XFL in October of 2019 then, in turn, he was allocated to Houston before the season started.
Walker has not disappointed with the Roughnecks throwing seven touchdowns to only one interception with 442 yards passing. He is completing 61.4% of his passes in the Roughnecks 2-0 start, but Walker can extend plays with his athleticism to create plays in the passing game. That skillset is the one similar sweeping the NFL game and the quarterback position.
The XFL's championship game lands on April 26. That's the same weekend as the NFL Draft, meaning NFL teams will have signed players through free agency and drafted players; they'll know exactly precisely their roster stands. It gives the Texans another avenue to possibly bring players to their roster, and they could quickly bring in Walker or any other XFL player for OTAs to get a closer look at them.
It was Walker's former teammate from the Colts, Andrew Luck that recommended to his father, XFL commissioner Oliver, that the XFL sign the Roughnecks' quarterback. Walker has not disappointed and if he keeps playing the way he does, he will be a popular name on the NFL team's radars.
With the Texans currently looking for a backup quarterback, Walker's skill set matches what Watson does on a game to game basis. Bringing Walker in will require some money due to the chance of other NFL teams vying for his services.
One thing is for sure, with Walker playing in the same city as the Texans, it is a no-brainer for them to keep an eye on the Roughnecks quarterback and keep him on the shortlist as an option to win a roster spot on the Texans heading in 2020.
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