Houston Texans: Kenny Stills is off to the best start of his career

Houston Texans wide receiver Kenny Stills (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)
Houston Texans wide receiver Kenny Stills (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images) /

The Houston Texans have picked up a gem in wide receiver Kenny Stills via trade before the start of the season. He’s off the best start of his career. What?

The Houston Texans will be hitting the road once again to take on the flourishing Los Angeles Chargers.  This will be one of their more difficult matchups this season as Philip Rivers still continues to turn in good results week-after-week even as his career is starting to transition toward the twilight.

They’ll have Joey Bosa to deal with as well but luckily won’t have Melvin Gordon on-hand to try to stop as well as he’s still holding out for a long-term deal.  He will likely return at some point this season but the Houston Texans don’t have to worry about that.

They’ll be using a three-pronged attack of Austin Ekeler, Justin Jackson and former Houston Texans member Troymaine Pope to try to get the job done.  I’m happy that Pope has latched onto another team as his speed and work ethic was alluring.  He wasn’t good enough to make this team at the time but the Chargers have seen something in him.

But as we look forward to this matchup, there was been an immense improvement on the offensive front and that has been the addition of Kenny Stills via the trade that also included teammate Laremy Tunsil.

Stills has come on strong this season and he was the perfect solution for the team’s woes at the slot position, one that was supposed to be solved by Keke Coutee.  Stills is a seasoned veteran and Coutee still has yet to prove that he can stay healthy for an elongated stretch of games.

This was a move that praised the Houston Texans for because we know exactly what we’d be getting out of Stills.

But did we expect this?

I certainly didn’t.  But it goes to show how things are different when a change of scenery is invoked.

According to Pro Football Focus, Stills has an 89.8 offensive and an 88.3 pass grade through 51 snaps in the first two games.

His pass grade ranks him 2nd among receivers and his overall offensive grade puts him at 3rd. 

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This is all with no drops to his credit.  This is BY FAR the best start of his career.  Stills, who is going into his 7th season in the NFL, is still showing he has what it takes to run his routes and to show his speediness to win the battle with his matchups.

I’m absolutely thrilled about this and although I know that he will have a game where he might not be as great but it’s safe to say that Stills has been an amazing pickup from that trade.

Stills was signed to a four-year, $32 million deal with the Dolphins back in 2017 which will pay him $8 million in base salary this season as well as $7M in 2020, making him a tremendously valuable acquisition for the money invested.

He’ll be a free agent in 2021 and if he keeps playing like this, this will render a tough decision to make on whether or not they should extend his presence in H-Town for bonus rounds.

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But that’s a long way from now so until then we’ll enjoy what this guy has to offer to help this team win games!

Let’s go Houston Texans!

Stills has caught five balls for 75 yards and one touchdown — a rushing/receiving touchdown — off six targets through the first two games this season.

For more grades, advanced statistics and more at Pro Football Focus, subscribe to PFF’s EDGE and ELITE subscriptions at ProFootballFocus.com.