Tom Savage has been in the NFL since he was drafted 135th overall by the Houston Texans in 2014. Since then, he’s appeared in all of six games for the Texans, and only started three. In Week 1 of the 2017 season, he only lasted until halftime before the Texans benched him in favor of their highly touted 2017 draft pick Deshaun Watson.
Houston still lost under Watson, but he apparently impressed the coaching staff enough to be named the starter for Week 2 in a Thursday Night Football showdown against the Bengals. While Savage himself has been quiet with the media over his swift demotion to the second string, his agent isn’t following suit.
Neil Schwartz, who represents Savage, told ProFootballTalk that his client was barely given a chance to show off his skills.
“I’m still trying to figure this out … 31 plays and you’re getting benched?” Neil said. “It makes no sense.”
“Tom earned the right to be the starter,” Schwartz said. “It wasn’t given to him. And he’s worked hard every day in training camp and the exhibition season to be the starter – on the field and off the field – to maintain a leadership role. After 31 plays you bench him? I have an issue.”
He went on to question to judgement of Houston head coach Bill O’Brien and point out that part of Savage’s ineffectiveness was due to receivers dropping passes.
“I watched all 31 plays, because that was the extent of what Tom saw in the first half,” Schwartz said. “I can’t figure out why (Bill O’Brien) is benching Tom. I went through every single play and I even went one step further. I asked two different NFL personnel people (or) coaches on two separate teams to evaluate and break down their film to see if I was missing something. He went 7-for-13 … 12 of the 13 balls touched receivers’ hands. The only ball that didn’t was the strip-sack fumble that they called incomplete (upon replay). Seven were completions, five were drops.”
The other part of the problem was the Texans’ laughable attempts at quarterback protection. They allowed 10 sacks against the Jaguars in Week 1. The switch from Savage to Watson is probably an attempt to have a more athletic and mobile quarterback, in an effort to avoid losing so many yard due to a poor offensive line.