An NFL rookie quarterback who is setting records and piling up wins is also gaining a reputation for his outspoken faith.
Houston’s C.J. Stroud set two more league records in Sunday’s 39-37 comeback victory over Tampa Bay, tying the NFL record for most touchdown passes by a rookie in a game (five) and breaking the league record for most passing yards (470) by a rookie. Stroud also engineered a game-winning drive that culminated in a 15-yard touchdown pass with six seconds left. He did not throw an interception.
Earlier this season, Stroud set a rookie record for most pass attempts to start a career without an interception.
The Texans are 4-4 and in second place in the AFC South.
“First and foremost, I gotta give all glory and praise to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,” Stroud said during a post-game interview on CBS. “These last couple of weeks have been up and down. I’ve been going through a lot on and off the field. But when you give your life to the Lord, He gives you opportunities, and it’s what you do with it. He gave me this opportunity to come back in that two-minute drill.”
His records, he said, are a “blessing.”
“I do it for the glory of God,” he said. “… I put in the work to make other people happy and make other people smile.”
“First and foremost, I got to give all glory and praise to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”
— Sports Spectrum (@Sports_Spectrum) November 5, 2023
The Texans picked Stroud in the first round as the second overall pick out of Ohio State. He finished third in Heisman voting as a senior while leading the Buckeyes to the College Football Playoff.
Stroud often discusses his faith during interviews, as he did after his first NFL victory in September.
“I’m blessed enough to wake up every day and to walk, to talk, to smell to, to interact with people, to play football,” he said then. “These are all things we take for granted on a day-to-day basis. But I try to do my best to thank God through all that because of His grace and His mercy; He laid His life on the cross for us — I really believe that. This is bigger than just a ball. And if I have to use football for my purpose to spread the gospel and the life of Jesus Christ, then I’ll do that. And I think that’s what God wants.
“But at the same time, I want to win, too,” he added, smiling.
Photo Courtesy: ©Getty Images/Tim Warner / Stringer
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.
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