The Baltimore Ravens will open their 2023 regular season on Sunday, Sept. 10, when they'll welcome the Houston Texans to M&T Bank Stadium. It wasn't long ago that the Flock didn't even know who they would be facing as the opposing starter QB, but they now know that and then some.
New Head Coach DeMeco Ryan named rookie C.J. Stroud the starter of the Texans at the quarterback position ahead of their Week 1 matchup against the Ravens last week.
On Monday, the Texans also revealed their captains for the season, with a rookie of all men leading the way, as Ari Meirov of The 33rd Team revealed early on the day.
That's correct: an NFL franchise just named a rookie with zero experience as their captain. Stroud will share the duties with more reasonable picks for the role, including veterans OT Laremy Tunsil, S Jalen Pitre, and S Jimmie Ward.
Even though Stroud is coming off putting together a great career at Ohio State, that's still just college-ball and the NFL is an entirely different beast.
The 21-year-old freshman was the second-overall pick in the 2023 NFL draft, but naming him a captain so early could backfire even when considering his position as the QB1 of Houston.
Stroud will need to earn a certain level of respect from his teammates with his actual performance on the field rather than his past pedigree and accolades in the NCAA, and there might be some problems and conflicts through the first few games of the 2023 NFL season, something the Ravens should take advantage of next Sunday.
According to Jamison Hensley of ESPN, the Ravens are 14-2 when facing rookie quarterbacks in Baltimore with John Harbaugh coaching, so odds are Stroud eats his first L as a pro next Sunday at the bank, donning the C or not.