Houston Texans' Rookie Cornerback Could Miss Week 15

The Houston Texans could be without their promising young rookie defensive back for at least another week. Cornerback Derek Stingley Jr. missed his third straight practice on Friday, indicating he's unlikely to play in his team's Week 15 matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs. Stingley has missed the last four games of the season with a hamstring injury suffered in the Texans' 24-10 Week 10 loss to the New York Giants. He had allowed an impressive 78.4 passer rating on throws in his direction over his nine career starts.

Stingley's lingering unavailability is just one of many disappointments endured by the Texans in their nightmare season. At 1-11-1, they sport the league's worst record and have the inside track on the 2023 NFL Draft's first overall pick. Unless they believe Stingley can benefit from additional reps in the system, the Texans may be better off shutting him down for the rest of the season. He has already proven himself a cornerstone of their future, and there's no point risking his health for a faint chance at wins that may only hurt the organization's future prospects anyway.

Stingley joined the Texans as their third-overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. In college, he was a dominant cover corner from the moment he stepped on the field at LSU, nabbing six interceptions and breaking up 15 passes in a staggering freshman season for the undefeated 2019 Tigers. Though his rookie season with the Texans has lacked splash plays, he's still shown he has a bright future in the pros.
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