Texans RB Dameon Pierce tells rookie QB C.J. Stroud to ‘command the huddle’

HOUSTON — Houston Texans running back Dameon Pierce is only impressed by two things regarding the NFL.

Hard work and leadership.

The harder you work, the more you lead by example. It is that simple to Pierce on the football field, and if you deviate from those two things, you set yourself up for failure. The fourth-round pick in the 2022 NFL draft from Florida hit the ground running from the moment he set foot inside NRG Stadium.

The former Gator impressed the former coaching staff with his ability to put in the extra time to become a better running back in the NFL. He started in 13 games and amassed 939 yards and four touchdowns for the Texans before being shut down for the season with an ankle injury.

Pierce, 23, has noticed the same qualities he had in his rookie season in quarterback C.J. Stroud, who the Texans selected with the second overall pick in the 2023 NFL draft from Ohio State.

“C.J.’s a great kid,” Pierce told the media June 6. “I’ve loved the way he’s come in and worked. Obviously, he was a high draft pick, so there are a lot of expectations on him, and he’s handled it very well. Handling the media very well. Handling the playbook.”

Both players are getting accustomed to learning the new offensive system being installed by first-year offensive coordinator Bobby Slowik which is very detailed and requires a lot of work off the field to have a complete outlook on just how potent it could be for the Texans this year as it has been for the San Francisco 49ers in the past.

“He’s a quick learner,” said Pierce about Stroud. “I would say that he’s a quick learner, and the only thing I tell him every time I’m on the field with him is, ‘Command the huddle, bro.’ Don’t be scared. Don’t be shy. Don’t shy away from that leadership role. You’ve got guys on this team who are behind you and who will help you in that aspect. And we’re here to lift you up, so if you go out there and make a mistake, you know you’ve got solid ground to fall back on, and we’re going to help you through it.”

For Stroud, the sentiments are the same regarding Pierce, as they have developed a bond that will carry over into the season.

“D.P. [Pierce] is amazing man,” Stroud said after week two of voluntary OTAs. “Somebody who’s not only going to have your back running the ball, but he’s going to pass protect. More so than that, he’s just a great person.

“Just being around him a little, getting to know him every other day, he’s hilarious. He’s always very upbeat, very positive, and wants to work and wants to get better. I accept a lot of feedback from him. He likes feedback from me. We’ve just been enjoying working with each other, so it’s been a blessing to have someone like D.P.”


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Dameon Pierce, Texans RB, Advises Rookie QB C.J. Stroud to Take Control of the Huddle.

Houston Texans running back Dameon Pierce is impressed by hard work and leadership in the NFL, and he sees those qualities in rookie quarterback C.J. Stroud. Pierce says Stroud has handled the pressure of being the second overall pick in the 2023 NFL draft well and is a quick learner. Both players are adapting to the new offensive system being implemented by first-year offensive coordinator Bobby Slowik, and Pierce urges Stroud to command the huddle and be a leader, which he says he is doing well. Pierce and Stroud have developed a bond and enjoy working together.

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