Texans: Is Fitzpatrick's benching warranted?
With a 4-5 record, and with four of those defeats coming in their last five games, the Houston Texans find themselves with an uphill battle to make the playoffs, and many fans calling for a quarterback change. It’s unfair to place all the blame for Houston’s recent struggles on Ryan Fitzpatrick, however he certainly shoulders some of it.
Fitzpatrick has been average rather than bad; his +0.5 passing grade ranks 21st out of 46 quarterbacks, while his 83.12 PFF QB Rating ranks 30th among the same group. However he has been frustratingly inconsistent. Through the first three weeks of the season, Fitzpatrick went from average, to poor, to good. He also seemed to lack any sort of aggressiveness, attempting deep passes (20+ yards) only 8% of the time.
Fitzpatrick improved over the next four games, with a cumulative +8.8 passing grade. He also used deep passes more frequently (12.8%) and with an impressive 66.7 Deep Pass Accuracy, tied for second in the league. Unfortunately for Fitzpatrick that solid spell brought just one victory, and was followed by two awful performances, in which he recorded cumulative -8.0 passing grade and a lowly 58.3 Accuracy Percentage.
Ultimately Fitzpatrick’s inability to perform consistently has been his undoing, and forced the Texans to look elsewhere. Enter, Ryan Mallett.