Trying out with Texans, Klein loves QB

Trying out with Texans, Klein loves QB
May 10, 2013, 8:00 pm
Share This Post

Collin Klein is a quarterback.

Nothing else.

The former Kansas State QB, who was a finalist for this year’s Heisman Trophy, is with the Texans for their three-day rookie camp. He hasn’t signed a contract. Instead, he’s in Houston on a tryout basis but he’s trying to prove he can play quarterback in the NFL.

There had been plenty of talk about the possibility of Klein moving to tight end to make the transition to the NFL. But the Texans brought him in to look at him as a quarterback. And Klein appreciates it.

“That’s what my heart, that’s what I’ve said from the very beginning,” Klein said. “The chance to do that is all that you can ask for.

“It’s just what I love to do. I just love to throw the football, compete out there with my teammates. I love the mental part of strategy that you have to have at that position. It’s a constant game of getting better.”

While he was a good quarterback in college, some are comparing Klein to former Florida Gator Tim Tebow, whose game hasn’t translated well to the NFL. Some thought Tebow should change positions and he hasn’t.

And Klein isn’t in a hurry to give up quarterbacking either.

“I’m gonna go until that door closes with about eight locked latches on it,” he said. “We’re gonna play quarterback. Again, that’s my heart. That’s what I love to do.”

Klein was very good in 2012. At Kansas State, he threw for 2,641 yards and 16 touchdowns. He also ran for 924 yards and 23 touchdowns. He led the Wildcats to an 11-1 regular season record and into the Fiesta Bowl, where they lost to Oregon.

Klein finished third in the Heisman Trophy voting this year behind Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel and Notre Dame’s Manti Te’o.

He was a finalist for the Heisman Trophy but on draft day, didn’t have his name called. Klein admitted that not being drafted was disappointing but said it was a “joyful moment” when the Texans called about 10 minutes after the draft concluded. He said the Texans contacted him some leading up to the draft, enough for him to know they were interested.

While there was talk about Klein’s changing positions, he said no teams contacted him about playing another position. He said he thinks they honored his wishes to be a quarterback.

This offseason, Klein has been working with former NFL quarterback Jake Plummer, who reached a level of success in the league while being a mobile quarterback. The two were set up through Klein’s agent and have been working on “little things” like footwork and timing.

Klein has also changed his throwing motion and thinks his new one is much better.

“You know what, I think he’s come a long way,” Texans head coach Gary Kubiak said. “Because I know what he did in college and obviously I’ve talked to Jake (Plummer) and I know what they’ve been working on. The first thing that jumped at me is that he knew exactly what he was doing after coming out of a meeting so that tells you how sharp he is. Obviously, all that other stuff you can work on. Obviously, it’s a big opportunity for him and it’s a step in the right direction this morning.”

The Texans have four quarterbacks on the roster; they would have five if they signed Klein. Matt Schaub is the starter, T.J. Yates is the backup. Case Keenum, who is also in rookie camp, is the incumbent third-stringer and Stephen McGee is a challenger. There’s a logjam in front of the former Heisman finalist.

“Hey, any opportunity is an opportunity,” he said. “Every day for everybody in the NFL is a tryout. However that opportunity comes, it’s still an opportunity.”’

Since being in Houston, Klein has gotten a chance to learn plenty from Keenum, who was with the Texans on their practice squad last season. He’s also been working quite a bit with first-round draft pick DeAndre Hopkins, who is also Klein’s roommate.

“Oh my gosh. The throwing radius is pretty big,” Klein said of throwing to Hopkins.

Klein didn’t actually start playing organized football until his freshman year of high school. Before then, he was a basketball player. But since then, he’s fallen in love with the game and especially the quarterback position.

“It’s what I love to do,” Klein said about playing QB. “If you’re doing what you love to do, you’re not working a day in your life.”

Texans - Team News
Alfred Blue - RB
Alfred Blue (ankle) remained limited in Thursday's practice. Arian Foster's caddie is in no danger of missing Week 9.
Oct 30 3:41PM Read More
Andre Johnson - WR
Andre Johnson (ankle) returned to Texans practice Thursday, getting in a limited session. Johnson was never in any danger of missing Sunday's game against the Eagles. With six teams on bye for Week 9, Johnson is a WR1.
Oct 30 3:40PM Read More
Arian Foster - RB
Arian Foster (knee) returned to Texans practice Thursday, getting in a limited session. The Texans are just managing their superstar back's reps. With DeMarco Murray facing the Cardinals' elite run defense, there's a case to be made for Foster as Week 9's No. 1...
Oct 30 3:39PM Read More
Alfred Blue - RB
Alfred Blue (ankle) was limited in Wednesday's practice. Blue got first-team reps with Arian Foster (knee) not practicing. The Texans also held out Andre Johnson (ankle) on Wednesday.
Oct 29 5:15PM Read More
Andre Johnson - WR
Andre Johnson (ankle) did not practice Wednesday. The Texans are limiting Johnson's reps for rest purposes. He didn't suffer any setbacks last week and should be fine for Sunday's game against the Eagles.
Oct 29 3:43PM Read More
Arian Foster - RB
Arian Foster (knee) did not practice Wednesday. It's a new injury for Foster. Coming off his three-touchdown performance, it's possible the Texans are getting him some rest. Foster will be a top-three running back in Week...
Oct 29 3:18PM Read More
Zac Diles - LB
Texans signed LB Zac Diles. CB Elbert Mack was waived in a corresponding roster move. Diles' addition is a sign the Texans aren't expecting Brian Cushing (knee) back for Week 9.
Oct 28 4:04PM Read More
Garrett Graham - TE
Garrett Graham was held without a catch in the Texans' Week 8 win over Tennessee. Graham was targeted just one time on the day, a seam shot from Ryan Fitzpatrick that predictably fell incomplete. Graham has been a very minor part of the offense, making...
Oct 26 4:53PM Read More
Andre Johnson - WR
Andre Johnson caught seven passes for 55 yards in the Texans' Week 8 win over the Titans. Johnson saw a team-high dozen targets. He was followed by Titans top CB Jason McCourty for much of the afternoon, leaving DeAndre Hopkins to work on sophomore Blidi...
Oct 26 4:44PM Read More
DeAndre Hopkins - WR
DeAndre Hopkins caught five passes for 95 yards in the Texans' Week 8 win over the Titans. Hopkins was targeted 11 times compared to 12 for Andre Johnson. Hopkins picked up chunk yards on all of his grabs, and was stopped at the five-yard line on one grab where...
Oct 26 4:24PM Read More
Alfred Blue - RB
Alfred Blue rushed for 42 yards on 14 carries in the Texans' Week 8 win over the Titans. Blue added a 22-yard catch. With the Texans clobbering the Titans late and Arian Foster having already piled up 173 yards and three touchdowns, Blue got plenty of run late...
Oct 26 4:11PM Read More
Ryan Fitzpatrick - QB
Ryan Fitzpatrick completed just 19-of-35 passes for 227 yards, one touchdown, and zero... Fitzpatrick was pretty bad for most of the day, begging to be picked off, but the Texans rode Arian Foster's legs to victory. Fitzpatrick's lone touchdown went to Foster on...
Oct 26 3:45PM Read More
Arian Foster - RB
Arian Foster rushed for 151 yards and two touchdowns on 20 carries in the Texans' 30-16, Week 8... Foster managed just 36 yards on his first 10 carries, but broke a 34-yard touchdown and had no trouble finding holes in the Tennessee defense from there on. Foster caught a...
Oct 26 3:21PM Read More
Jadeveon Clowney - LB
Jadeveon Clowney (knee) is active for Week 8 against the Titans. Clowney will play on a "pitch count," likely in pass-rushing and third-down situations. Good luck with Clowney and J.J. Watt, Zach Mettenberger. Inactive for the...
Oct 26 10:34AM Read More
Jadeveon Clowney - LB
Texans OLB Jadeveon Clowney (knee) is likely to play against the Titans, but will be on a... "I thought what he did what he had to do this week," coach Bill O’Brien said. "I think he’s got a good shot to play on Sunday." Clowney has been...
Oct 25 9:13AM Read More

More Team Talk