DeMeco Ryans thrilled to see Canadian receiver John Metchie III make first career NFL catch

Photo: AP/David J. Phillip

Houston Texans’ head coach DeMeco Ryans was thrilled to see Canadian receiver John Metchie III make his first career NFL reception this past week after missing his entire rookie year due to leukemia.

“Credit to John, man, all the work that he’s put in, proud of him, proud moment for him. He’s dealt with way more than any of us probably have dealt with and to see him bounce back and go play in his first NFL football game and to make a catch, what an awesome moment for him. I couldn’t be more proud of John,” Ryans told Texans Radio.

“I know that’s his first game back but John has that mindset to where, ‘I don’t want to be just an average receiver, like I want to be the best receiver in the NFL,’ so it’s just encouraging to see he has the mindset to continue to get better. And he’ll do better with the more opportunities that he gets but I’m very happy for John.”

Metchie made one catch for 17 yards in the team’s 31-20 loss to the Indianapolis Colts in what was his first career NFL game. The 23-year-old was born in Taiwan but raised primarily in Brampton, Ont. alongside his older brother, Royce, who plays defensive back for the Toronto Argonauts.

The five-foot-eleven, 187-pound target was selected in the second round of the 2022 NFL Draft out of the University of Alabama despite suffering a torn ACL in the 2021 SEC Championship Game as a member of the Crimson Tide. He made 155 receptions over three seasons with the team for 2,081 yards and 14 touchdowns.

Metchie is currently listed as the backup to 10-year NFL veteran Robert Woods, who has made 12 receptions for 131 yards through two games this season. New franchise quarterback C.J. Stroud had an impressive performance against the Colts, completing 30-of-47 pass attempts for 384 yards and two touchdowns.

Ryans is in his first season as Houston’s head coach after spending the last two years as the defensive coordinator of the San Francisco 49ers. The 39-year-old spent six seasons at linebacker for the Texans (2006-11) before finishing his career with the Philadelphia Eagles (2012-15), receiving two Pro Bowl selections and winning NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year.

The Texans (0-2) are scheduled to visit the Jacksonville Jaguars (1-1) on Sunday, Sept. 24 with kickoff slated for 1:00 p.m. EDT.

Justin Dunk is a football insider, sports reporter and anchor.