The Houston Texans entered Sunday's contest against the Pittsburgh Steelers having not won a home contest in 644 days.
"I've been thinking about this for a long time," Stroud said after the win, via the official transcript. "Y'all deserve to feel special. Y'all deserve to root the Texans on. Not winning since 2021, I think it was around Christmas, that is not flying for anybody in this building. I want them to know we're fighting our tails off every day to make sure y'all walk around with Texans gear pride, y'all walk around with that swag that we walk around with when we get a W."
It's a young season, but the bitterness of the last few seasons in Houston has been wiped away under DeMeco Ryans. To a man, Texans players said the new coach preached the importance of breaking the streak of home futility.
"DeMeco came in and he put up a date," tight end Dalton Schultz said. "It's the last time that the Texans won a game at home. At the forefront of the week, we were honed in on just being able to win at home. There's always room for improvement, but that was a great team win and we needed that one."
Stroud has led the early season turnaround that has the Texans in the thick of an AFC South race, with every division club sitting at 2-2.
Sunday, the No. 2 overall pick completed 16 of 30 passes for 306 yards with two touchdowns and no picks. It's his third consecutive game with 250-plus passing yards, two-plus pass TDs and zero INTs -- the longest streak by any rookie since at least 1970. He joined Gardner Minshew (2019) as the only players with 30-plus pass attempts and zero interceptions in each of their first four career starts.
Stroud became the first player in NFL history with 1,200-plus pass yards and zero INTs over the first four career games (Dak Prescott is the only other player since 1970 with 1,000-plus pass yards and 0 INTs), per NFL Research. Stroud's 1,212 yards passed Andrew Luck for second-most all-time in a player's first four career games, behind only Cam Newton's 1,386 yards (Newton had a 5-5 TD-INT ratio).
Reminder: Stroud put up these numbers despite an extremely banged-up offensive line.
For the Ohio State product who grew up in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., ending the home losing streak was paramount for the fans.
"For me I take that real personal because I don't like being bagged on my teams," he said. "When my Lakers lose, I be pissed. I take that stuff real serious, man. It's up to us to work every day and put the work in. You've seen, those Steelers fans came and showed out today in our stadium, and we sent them home. I think our fans felt the energy, 'Man, we aren't playing today from the get-go.' I just want to say, we're going to keep fighting every day just so y'all can walk around with that swag. I think that's huge for this team. That's something that we want to keep building on, and it's a blessing to be able to be in Houston, a great town with a lot of stuff to do, great people, Southern hospitality to its finest, and I'm falling in love with the city little by little. It's a blessing."
If Stroud continues on the trajectory indicated by his first four NFL starts, the Texans won't have to worry about 600-day home droughts any longer.