3 takeaways from C.J. Stroud’s 2024 NFL pre-draft press conference

C.J. Stroud met with the media 10 days before the 2024 NFL draft.

The 2023 second-overall pick and reigning NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year commented on the Stefon Diggs addition, Tank Dell’s recovery, while slipping in some John Metchie III comments before giving out some draft advice concerning his former college teammate, wide receiver Marvin Harrison Jr.

C.J. Stroud pre-2024 NFL draft press conference takeaways

On the Stefon Diggs

Stroud mentioned he was asleep with his phone in “do not disturb” mode when the Diggs trade went down. Upon opening his phone, he received numerous messages from friends which in his still half-asleep mindset, mistook as them just checking in with him. It wasn’t until he was fully alert later that he saw the news on Instagram and realized what all the previous texts meant.

It was a humorous story at a moment of jubilation as Stroud’s dream-state became reality. After fully processing the news, Stroud mentioned his approval for the move by saying, “Just really excited to get to work with him.”

The comment came after Stroud mentioned that the pair had become acquainted at the 2024 Pro Bowl Games where he met Diggs’ kids and got “to see the type of person” Diggs is.

Stroud spoke on what Diggs’ addition meant on the field and in the locker room by saying, “He adds a ton of value to that room. There’s a lot of wisdom that he carries that I think he’ll spread to the other guys. He’s been reaching out to really everybody and I think that whole room in general is going to be great.”

Some may have had concerns about Diggs’ addition to the locker room after reported issues he and his former quarterback Josh Allen had when he was with the Bills. The relationship in Houston seems to be off to a good start, with Stroud leading you to believe that there shouldn’t be any future issues.

“I think we’re all going to feed off of each other. It’s going to be very fun and very exciting just to work with everybody in that room and I’m very excited for it.”

Tank Dell injury update

Dell is returning to the Texans after breaking his fibula in his rookie season. Stroud provided an update on the second-year receiver, saying, “He looks great.”

Stroud went on to mention that it was big for him to be able to throw to Dell in L.A. Stroud also caught everyone’s attention when he mentioned John Metchie III when saying that he “looks amazing as well.”

Stroud talked about how he and Dell, both rookies in 2023, were starting to catch up with the mental side of the game, mentioning that “everything is starting to slow down, and the wheels aren’t turning so much up in your head. You’re starting to play ball.”

John Metchie III’s development

While it was great to hear about Dell working his way back, the unexpected and unsolicited, Stroud also provided update on fellow young wideout John Metchie III. The Texans drafted the receiver in the second round of the 2022 NFL draft, just a few months after tearing his ACL. Just a few months after that he received the Leukemia diagnosis. 

Metchie III missed his entire rookie season as he worked back from injury and health. This past season was more like his rookie season than his second year. As the 2023 season progressed Metchie III continued to improve. The latest comments from his quarterback continue to show the arrow is pointing up for Metchie III. 

“He has a ton of value — a huge impact that I think he will bring this season,” Stroud said. “I think last year was good to get his feet back in the water coming off of an injury then something so traumatic like being sick how he was. His mindset is that he’s just ready to come back and ball. Not only is he a great football player, but he’s a great person and I wouldn’t want anybody else other than those guys in that room. Metchie is looking amazing. Everything that he will put on this field will be no surprise, but I think everybody in this room knows how special he can be, and he’ll put that on the field.”

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