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Texans sticking with Ryan Fitzpatrick, but Mallett getting reps

The Houston Texans sound like they're committed to Ryan Fitzpatrick with Ryan Mallett waiting in the wings.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Despite their recent struggles, the Houston Texans are sticking with starting quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick for the time being.

After winning just two games a year ago, everything was looking good for the Texans after their 3-1 start this season. Behind a dominant defense and a run-heavy offense led by a game-managing Fitzpatrick, Houston made quick work of three mediocre teams in Washington, the Oakland Raiders and the Buffalo Bills.

However, once the schedule got tougher, the losses started coming, and the Texans have now dropped three straight to the likes of the Indianapolis Colts, Pittsburgh Steelers and Dallas Cowboys. Still, head coach Bill O'Brien isn't ready to give up on Fitzpatrick in favor of backup Ryan Mallett just yet. Via the official team website:

"Fitzy is our quarterback and when you look at our tape, again, you cannot just point to one position and say that’s the position that is at fault. There are a lot of positions that need to play better; we need to coach better, all those different things. It all goes into why sometimes we stall offensively. It’s not one guy."

Anytime a team endures a losing streak, there are usually questions surrounding the starting quarterback, especially when it's clear Fitzpatrick isn't a franchise quarterback. O'Brien did admit that Mallett is continuing to improve in practice while getting more acclimated to the offense, and he'll keep giving Mallet reps in practice, saying:

"So we’re going to continue to work with both of these guys in practice and we’ll see how it improves and hopefully it will get better and better and that will help our offense get better."

Mallett was acquired prior to the start of the season from the New England Patriots, where O'Brien was the offensive coordinator when New England drafted Mallett in the third round of the 2011 NFL Draft. He has yet to start a game in his pro career.