One of the NFL's top rookie quarterbacks says he wants to use his talent to not only win games but to spread the Gospel of Christ.
Houston's C.J. Stroud recorded the first victory of his young pro career Sunday in a 37-17 victory over Jacksonville, passing for 280 yards with two touchdowns without throwing interceptions. Through three games, the Texans QB ranks fifth in the league in passing yards and fifth in completions.
But Stroud, who was drafted in the first round out of Ohio State, said football isn't his only focus.
"A lot of people don't get to live the life I do. It's hard – it's hard, but it's a privilege," he said at a recent news conference. "And I'm blessed enough to wake up every day and to walk, to talk, to smell to, to interact with people, to play football. These are all things we take for granted from a day-to-day basis. But I try to do my best to thank God through all that because His grace and His mercy; He laid His life on the cross for us – I really believe that. This is bigger than just 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," Stroud asserted.
"But at the same time I want to win too," he added, smiling.
The 6-foot-3 Stroud was one of the top quarterbacks in college, finishing third in Heisman voting as a senior while leading the Buckeyes to the College Football Playoff. He was the second pick overall in the 2023 NFL draft. His 384 passing yards in week two are the most by an Ohio State QB in NFL history.
His social media profile reads "follower of Christ."
On Sunday, Stroud credited God for his talent and added, "you have to meet Him halfway with your hard work."
"I think just those hard losses I took in college – the hard losses we took those two weeks (with Houston), the wins I've won –I know God has taught me what it takes to be successful in this game of football. And it's a blessing," he said after his first NFL victory. "... I'm blessed enough to have a team that will continue to fight and it's a blessing to have guys around you to do that."
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Julio Aguilar/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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