C.J. Stroud sets record for passes without pick to start career

ATLANTA -- Houston Texans rookie quarterback C.J. Stroud set another record Sunday during his team's 21-19 loss to the Atlanta Falcons.

Stroud went 20-for-35 for 249 yards and a touchdown and finished the game without an interception, setting the record for the most pass attempts without an interception to start a career, breaking Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott's mark (176) from 2016.

The No. 2 overall pick, who now has 186 career attempts, views the achievement as "special."

"It's cool. I got close a couple of times. Those DBs are really good," Stroud said after the game. "It's important to take care of the football. I don't think I've put it in harm's way too many times. I just want to let our offense know and let my coach know they can trust me with the football, because turning the ball over is a recipe to lose."

Stroud eclipsed the previous record in the third quarter, when the Texans were leading 9-7 and he rolled out of the pocket and threw the ball out of bounds for his 177th attempt.

"C.J. continues to do a really good job of protecting the ball, protecting the team," Texans coach DeMeco Ryans said. "C.J. continues to play well. We just have to continue to play well around him."

Later in the game, with the Texans trailing, Stroud threw an 18-yard touchdown pass to tight end Dalton Schultz with 1:49 left to give the Texans a 19-18 lead. Ryans acknowledged the offense had a few hiccups Sunday, but he was impressed with how Stroud put the team ahead in the clutch.

"Credit to him and the offense for when it was time to go and make a play, even though it wasn't great throughout the game," Ryans said. "We started a little slow there, but when it was time to go finish, [I'm] proud of C.J. and the way he drove the offense down."

The Falcons, however, drove down the field and won the game with a Younghoe Koo field goal with two seconds left.

Stroud's record isn't the first historic accomplishment for the former Ohio State standout.

Following the Texans' 37-17 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 3, when Stroud threw for 280 yards and two touchdowns, he became the first quarterback in NFL history to have at least 900 passing yards, four passing touchdowns and zero interceptions in his first three career starts, according to ESPN Stats & Information.