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C.J. Stroud Not Slowing Down: Working on the Process

C.J. Stroud is not letting his recent success change who he is. 

The No. 2 overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft in the last two weeks has completed a pair of game-winning drives, been named the AFC Offensive Player of the Week, broken an NFL rookie quarterback passing record and on Wednesday had that record-setting game jersey displayed in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

This week even included the start of MVP chatter. Which for Stroud is what it is – just talk. 

"It's been cool to be able to be in the [MVP] talk, but just like they love me this week, they'll hate me the next. So, I don't try to look at that stuff," Stroud said. "I try to stay even keeled and just stay on the straight and narrow, and just work really hard and make my teammates around me better."

The amount of recognition for the rookie that has come over the past couple of weeks is fuel that opposing defenses can feed off of as they want to knock him down a peg.

And for Stroud, that's why his work ethic doesn't change regardless of how many records or game-winning drives he leads. 

"People are bringing their 'A' game because they want to knock me off whatever they think," Stroud said during media availability on Wednesday. "For me I just want to keep getting better and better, keep that chip on my shoulder and keep grinding." 

This season has been a process for Stroud. From the season opener to now heading into Week 10 at home against Arizona (2-8) eyeing a three-game winning streak for the Texans (5-4).

Stroud has been remarkable on deep passes. 

According to Next Gen Stats, on throws of 20 or more yards, ranks first in the NFL in completion percentage (64.5), passing yards (665), touchdown to interception ratio (6-0) and passer rating (147.5). 

In the fourth quarter, Stroud has been lights out. 

The rookie ranks second in passing yards (746), third in yards per attempt (9.3), tied for first in touchdown passes with six and a league second-best passer rating of 109.7. 

On third and fourth downs this season, when the chains needed to be moved, Stroud has been again the best signal-caller in the league. 

Stroud ranks first in completions (64), passing yards (856), touchdown to interception ratio (7-1) and passing first downs at 45 on third and fourth downs. 

It has been a process to rank as the best in the NFL in a laundry list of statistical categories and for Stroud it has been amazing, a dream come true, challenging and everything he's asked for. 

Everything he was ready for with the help of the support system around him on Kirby Drive. 

"Being an NFL quarterback isn't easy," Stroud said. "But that's why I feel like I was chosen to take on this role. I feel like I'm trying to do my best as I can. I'm blessed enough to have the support system around me from my family, to my teammates, to the front office, to my coaches.

"Everybody around me has been helping me a lot and I feel like I'm trying to do the same for them as well."