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Does Tom Savage have a chance to start for the Houston Texans' opener?

Bob Levey

Tom Savage is only a rookie this season with the Houston Texans, having just signed his contract to officially join the team. But if you don't think he can make an immediate impact, you may want to think again.

That's if you believe head coach Bill O'Brien, anyway.

O'Brien talked recently about the Texans' starting job at quarterback. According to him, all of the team's signal callers have an equal shot at landing the job:

O’Brien said the Texans will ensure during OTAs that reps are equal and each of the four QBs gets a chance to run the first unit. However, the team will narrow its focus as the regular season approaches.

"Whether it’s two weeks from now, three weeks from now, two months from now … we’ll make a determination on who gets the most reps to get them ready for the game," O’Brien said. "But we’re not there right now. We’ve got to continue to give these guys an equal amount of reps to give them an equal shot."

By the way, the quarterbacks in question are Ryan Fitzpatrick, T.J. Yates, Case Keenum, and Savage.

Keep in mind, the equal snaps thing is only going to be in OTAs. As O'Brien said, as the team gets to camp, I wouldn't expect it to stay that way. Someone will step forward and show they deserve more reps. A starter may not be made by the beginning of training camp, but at least someone will be weeded out by then.

Personally, I don't think Savage will be the starter on opening day. Fitzpatrick hasn't been a star in the NFL, but he is a past starter with eight years of experience. Yates has done less than Fitzpatrick, but is still far more experienced that Savage with three seasons of playing time under his belt. Keenum has only one year of playing time on the field, but he showed some promise last year with the Texans throwing for 1,760 yards, nine touchdowns, and six interceptions while completing 54% of his passes.

My guess is that Keenum or Fitzpatrick get the nod.

The good news for Savage is that none of those guys are dominant. But as a rookie, he's going to need to show quite a bit to overtake any, let alone all, of them.

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