Houston Texans quarterback CJ Stroud has not played since Week 14, when he sustained a head injury that placed him into concussion protocol. In his absence, the Texans have gone 1-1, and face the Tennessee Titans in Week 17 as they attempt to secure a Wild Card bid in the playoffs. Backups Davis Mills and Case Keenum have both played since Stroud’s injury.
CJ Stroud injury updates
Friday update: Stroud has been removed from the injury report and should be a full go in a game the Texans need to keep their playoff chances alive.
Thursday update: Stroud has been medically cleared to play and has cleared the concussion protocol, per Aaron Wilson.
Stroud is expected to return to practice ahead of Week 17 as he continues to move through the concussion protocol, per Ian Rapoport. Head coach DeMeco Ryans said that Stroud was “making progress.”
Potential good news for the #Texans: QB CJ Stroud, in the NFL's concussion protocol, is expected to practice today.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 27, 2023
Coach DeMeco Ryans told @StaceyDales on Sunday that Stroud had been in meetings on Friday. "He's definitely making progress." This would be more progress.
Fantasy football analysis
If Stroud returns, Davis Mills and Case Keenum will be benched. We can expect wide receivers Noah Brown and Nico Collins to see an uptick in fantasy earnings with the return of their starting quarterback, particularly with Tank Dell still out. Tight end Dalton Schultz may also see an increase in targets and yardage.
Stroud’s presence will absolutely affect betting this week. The Texans just barely eked by the Titans in Week 15 in a three-point overtime win. Stroud’s return would likely cause the spread to widen in favor of the Texans, and would be cause enough to place money on Houston for those who were unsure where to land on this matchup.