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With command of playbook, C.J. Stroud a "true football junkie"


Training camp rolls on and C.J. Stroud's grasp of the offense continues to impress.

The rookie quarterback is five practices in, and the mental part of his game is standing out to those around him.

"What you see about C.J….the work and the preparation that he does when he's not here," Head Coach DeMeco Ryans said. "He's a true football junkie: loves football, always watching football, always asking for extra cutups from our coaches. So, I'm just impressed with the mental part of him and just how much he loves the game of football."

The second overall pick in this year's NFL Draft, the Ohio State product is operating in a new offense. But he's like the rest of his new teammates: they're all learning the new system employed by first-year offensive coordinator Bobby Slowik. 11-year veteran Robert Woods has liked what he's seen from Stroud so far.

"Obviously, this is an advanced offense to learn," Woods said. "And he's picking it up right away. Picking up all the details and that's really good for a rookie to come out here and grasp this offense and be able to take hold of it."

Stroud, though, has embraced what Slowik and the staff are putting in place. He's a huge fan of the offensive system.

"I fell in love with it," Stroud said. "It's a different style than what I've played in college, but a lot of similarities to it, as well. Very timing-based, and I've actually really dove deep into it with Jerrod [Johnson] and Bill [Lazor] and Shane [Day], and then Case [Keenum] and Davis [Mills] have done a great job helping me, as well. So, just a lot of late nights studying, a lot of early mornings studying just really trying to get this thing and know it like the back of my hand."

That dedication to learning the offense has been clear, according to Ryans.

"With the playbook, it hasn't been an issue," Ryans said. "He knows the reads, knows the progressions, where he should go. He's making the proper decisions with the ball, so the playbook is not an issue at all."

Stroud and the Texans wore pads Monday for the first practice of training camp, and they'll practice again on Tuesday before a Wednesday off day.

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