Preseason quarterback competitions can be exhausting, and Houston Texans signal-caller Ryan Mallett reportedly caught up on some sleep Thursday.
John McClain of the Houston Chronicle noted Mallett missed practice because he overslept, although he made it later for meetings. Louis Riddick of ESPN said that it wasn’t a “big deal,” but it also didn’t look good either.
Mallett was back in practice on Friday, working with the team's third string offense, and threw a touchdown, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle.
"The situation with Ryan not being at practice that's between Ryan and I. Some things are left within the team," said head coach Bill O'Brien on Friday, per Wilson.
Brian T. Smith of the Houston Chronicle was a bit harsher when discussing Mallett’s mistake:
O'Brien added that Mallett remains second on the team's depth chart, per Wilson.
O’Brien recently declared Brian Hoyer the team’s starting quarterback after an offseason battle with Mallett. O’Brien pointed to Hoyer’s consistency as the main reason for the decision during the most recent episode of Hard Knocks.
Hoyer started 13 games for the Cleveland Browns in 2014 and led them to a 7-4 start, but he struggled down the stretch and ended up with 12 touchdowns to 13 interceptions. Mallett only started two games last season and suffered a pectoral injury and missed the remainder of the year.
O’Brien also said the decision was a close call during Hard Knocks and that Mallett should be prepared to eventually play if needed.
The fact that Mallett missed practice Thursday is interesting since Tania Ganguli of ESPN.com noted: “O'Brien has often stressed that what happens in games and on the practice field was only part of the team's evaluation of its quarterbacks."
It is an easy mistake to make, but sleeping in doesn’t exactly send the right message to a coaching staff evaluating quarterbacks on more than just on-field performances.