How is Texans QB coach Pep Hamilton helping Davis Mills adjust as a starter?

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The Houston Texans brought in Pep Hamilton as their quarterbacks coach and passing game coordinator. The pairing up with free agent quarterback Tyrod Taylor was expected to benefit Houston, as Hamilton was the quarterbacks coach for the Los Angeles Chargers last season, Taylor’s last stop.

In the 2021 NFL draft, the Texans selected quarterback Davis Mills in Round 3. If there ever was a situation where Hamilton could do his best work, it would be here, as he would be working with someone who played for Stanford’s David Shaw, who was an assistant coach from 2007-10 before taking the head football coaching job in 2011.

“I think it tells a story that he was one of the guys who studied me and helped Coach Shaw recruit me when I was recruited to Stanford,” Mills said. “So, he’s had eyes on me going back pretty far. He’s familiar with the system I had in college and how it translates into this one. So, he’s been helping me a lot with that.”

The Texans are hoping Hamilton can ignite Mills the way he was able to unlock Justin Herbert with the Chargers last season. The No. 6 overall pick from Oregon threw for 4,336 yards, 31 touchdowns, and 10 interceptions en route to picking up NFL rookie of the year honors.

“I know Justin got thrown in early on in their season last year,” said Mills. “I think something that Pep emphasized when talking about Justin is just being able to get through your reads efficiently, not having to force anything in there. Obviously, protecting the football and getting down to the check downs is never a bad option.”

Mills says that the verbiage Hamilton uses is similar to what was used at Stanford, giving the rookie an easier adjustment.

“Some of that stuff just ties together and allows me to understand it a little easier,” Mills said.