Texans rookie QB C.J. Stroud continues to rewrite history in win over Steelers

HOUSTON -- Over the last three weeks, Houston Texans rookie quarterback C.J. Stroud thrust himself into record books in each game.

In Week 4, things were no different. The No. 2 overall pick went 16-for-30 passing for 306 yards and two touchdowns in the Texans' 30-6 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday.

Stroud's performance put him at 1,212 yards for the season, surpassing Patrick Mahomes, Justin Herbert and Andrew Luck for the second-most yards through four starts to begin a career. He trails only Cam Newton's 1,386 yards.

Stroud views it all as a "blessing" but is far from satisfied.

"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. "It's a blessing, but I want to do more. I want to be great at this game."

Stroud also has the third-most passing attempts (151) by a rookie without an interception to start his career, behind Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (176) and Miami Dolphins' Tua Tagovailoa (152).

The former Ohio State standout has thrown for over 300 yards twice so far and is the first quarterback to do so since Cincinnati Bengals' Joe Burrow and Herbert in 2020. Stroud also became the first Texans' quarterback to throw for 200 yards or more in his first four career games.

Stroud accomplished these feats while missing multiple starters on the offensive line as center Juice Scruggs, left guard Kenyon Green and right tackle Tytus Howard have yet to play in the regular season. And left tackle Laremy Tunsil missed the last three games. Even Tunsil's backup, Josh Jones, missed the Week 4 matchup.

"We already know you had that 'it' factor with him since we drafted him, man," wide receiver Nico Collins said after finishing with seven catches for 168 yards and two touchdowns against the Steelers. "It's a reason why he has that [captain's] 'C' on his chest. The dude can ball. It shows on Sundays. We're gonna keep climbing, keep running together man and keep shocking the world."

Houston (2-2) is off to the franchise's best start since 2019 after back-to-back wins, and the Texans are now in a four-way tie in the AFC South as they prepare to travel to face the Atlanta Falcons in Week 5 (Oct. 10, 1 p.m. ET, Fox).

"It feels good. All our hard work is paying off. We're right where we want to be," running back Devin Singletary told ESPN. "We just got to keep handling our business. [Stroud] keeps finding ways to get better and finding ways to take over the team in that leadership role, which is hard to do as a young guy. So long as he keeps stepping up, we're in good hands."