Report: Texans' Watson to start on Thursday vs. Bengals

by
Troy Taormina / USA TODAY Sports

The Houston Texans will start rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson on Thursday against the Cincinnati Bengals, sources told NFL Network's Ian Rapoport and James Palmer.

Head coach Bill O'Brien refused to name a starter at his press conference Tuesday and hinted that he will not be officially announcing his quarterback before game time.

Watson completed 12-of-23 passes for 102 yards with one touchdown and one interception in his NFL debut against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday after replacing starter Tom Savage in the second half.

The Texans drafted Watson 12th overall last spring, putting him on course to eventually be the starter, but O'Brien alluded in the preseason that the rookie needed more time to develop before taking over. Savage's 63-yard performance with no points scored through one half may have changed the team's course.

Savage made one of his two career starts against the Bengals last season, completing 18-of-29 passes for 176 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions in a 12-10 win.