Montreal Gazette

Texans tab veteran Taylor to start at QB


The Houston Texans on Monday made it official: Tyrod Taylor is their starting quarterbac­k.

The announceme­nt by head coach David Culley was expected and confirms that star Deshaun Watson, embroiled in legal problems, will sit on the roster, but won't play.

Houston opens at home against the Jacksonvil­le Jaguars on Sunday.

Culley also said Pro Bowl left tackle Laremy Tunsil practised all last week, expressing hope that his conditioni­ng will be on par to play this week. Tunsil was placed on the reserve/covid-19 list in mid-august.

Taylor, 32, has started 47 games in his career and made the Pro Bowl with the Buffalo Bills in 2015. He has completed 61.4 per cent of his passes and thrown for 9,770 yards, with 54 touchdowns against 20 intercepti­ons for his career. He's 24-21-1 as a starter for his career.

He spent the last two seasons with the Los Angeles Chargers.

Watson is listed as third on the depth chart behind Taylor and rookie Davis Mills.

He signed a four-year, Us$160-million contract last year, but requested a trade over the off-season after watching the franchise part with several star players. He reportedly was also upset at not being consulted during the team's search for a new head coach following the departure of Bill O'brien.

Watson also stands accused of sexual assault by 22 women who have filed lawsuits, and he's reportedly the target of a grand jury investigat­ion.

Saying he wanted to clarify a comment about vaccinatio­ns he made last week, New England head coach Bill Belichick on Monday doubled down on his opinion that COVID -19 vaccinatio­ns don't “solve all our problems.”

Belichick reiterated that “no player has been released or kept because of their vaccinatio­n status,” a reference to the release of quarterbac­k Cam Newton last week.

But he didn't back off of his opinion about vaccinatio­ns in general, despite pushback from the NFL late last week.

“My comment relative to the vaccinatio­ns, really the way I feel is, that's an individual decision for each person to make,” Belichick said Monday. “As a team, we're better off if everyone is vaccinated. That being said, even if everyone is vaccinated, that doesn't solve all our problems, as we've seen multiple players, head coaches, assistant coaches throughout the league have tested positive for COVID even after they have been vaccinated.”

His comments echo the statement he made last week after Newton was released.

receiver Jamison Crowder is dayto-day after testing positive for COVID-19 last week, head coach Robert Saleh said Monday.

Crowder could play in the Jets' season opener on Sunday against Carolina.

Saleh also said left tackle Mekhi Becton will be cleared from the concussion protocol Tuesday.

Crowder, put on reserve/ COVID-19 on Friday, can rejoin the team if he returns two negative tests at least 24 hours apart, and is asymptomat­ic.

The 28-year-old led the Jets in receptions (59), receiving yards (699) and touchdown catches (six) last season.

Vaccinated New York Jets wide The Carolina Panthers put John

Miller on the reserve/covid-19 list Monday and the starting right guard will miss Sunday's season opener.

Panthers head coach Matt Rhule said Miller will miss at least 10 days, suggesting the six-footthree lineman tested positive for COVID-19 and is unvaccinat­ed. Ten days is the protocol for unvaccinat­ed players who test positive.

Rhule said last week the team had just two unvaccinat­ed players.

The Chicago Bears signed veteran

wide receiver Breshad Perriman on Monday.

The team waived linebacker Josh Woods in a correspond­ing move.

Perriman, who turns 28 on Friday, was released by the Detroit Lions last week.

“Big time speed,” said general manager Ryan Pace. “We've talked about him, I feel like, every year. We've gone back and looked at our grades. (Speed) has been the one trait. He's big. He's six foot two. He can still run and that's just continuing the speed and explosiven­ess in this offence.”

Perriman caught 30 passes for 505 yards and three touchdowns in 12 games (all starts) last season for the New York Jets. He has 125 career catches for 2,066 yards and 14 TDS with four teams since being selected No. 26 overall by the Baltimore Ravens in the 2015 draft. The Bears open the season Sunday at the Los Angeles Rams.

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