March 20, 2018

Drafting for the Texans; The Positional Outlook

There are many names floating around from analyst on who the Houston Texans might take at #27 overall in next week’s 2013 NFL Draft. Staying away from names of prospects, we decided to look at the positional needs of the Texans and which ones are the most important for the team’s success.

If there is one thing Texans fans are realizing, the #27 pick is not as clear as people think the pick should be. Take a look at the breakdown.


Top Needs


Wide Receiver

It is no secret the importance for the Texans to find that wide receiver of the future, but there is only a handful of wide receivers that could fit that mold from the get go. With Andre Johnson the only real threat at the wide receiver position, DeVier Posey (Achilles injury), Keshawn Martin and Lestar Jean have combined for 22 NFL catches.

The window has closed to a point for the Texans to find that second wide receiver via the free agency market, but there are serviceable (no game changers) still available. The Texans are in a position where they will have to make a tough decision, go get their wide receiver of choice or let the board fall and take their chances.

The Texans are thin at wide receiver and wide receiver is looking like a pressing need.

Prediction: Expect a wide receiver within the first two rounds of the draft. 


Inside Linebacker

All three of the Texans’ linebackers that suited up for the team in 2012 that are back this coming season all ended their season on the injured reserve (Brian Cushing, Darryl Sharpton and Tim Dobbins). Throw in the fact that they are light in the position and to a point youth deficient, inside linebacker is one of the positions that the defense needs to get younger and faster.

The good thing about the inside linebacker position is that the NFL draft has proved numerous times that starters can be found after the first round and this year should be no different. There are three to four inside linebackers that could instantly upgrade the defense in the first round and top half of the second round. Value could be had late in the third round but the team cannot wait too long to find their player.

A sideline to sideline linebacker that is not scared to stick his nose into ball carriers is what the Texans should be looking for and compliment Brian Cushing. Sharpton will get every opportunity to start in 2013 but it is a matter of time before the rookie draft pick takes over.

Prediction: The Texans draft an inside linebacker within their first four picks (before the third round).



Ed Reed and Daniel Manning are not young when it comes to NFL age but the Texans better find and develop their safety of the future. The Texans played plenty of three safety defensive sets since Wade Phillips arrived in Houston but the Texans currently do not have a third safety. The Texans need to find their future on the back half of the secondary and find a replacement to learn under Manning and Reed. This is one position that seems to have been lost in the shuffle but they need to draft one that can be the player that will lead in the middle of the field.


Prediction: Should be one of their first four picks.


Important to Find


Nose Tackle

We will keep beating this drum but the only proven quantity is Earl Mitchell, who wasn’t even the starter in 2012. The Texans need to fill the spot with a youngster who can give the defense one of two things, a space eater (to occupy lineman) or a disruptive low playing force that can create penetration on majority of the snaps. Whoever this player is, the 310 lbs. or 350 lbs. nose tackle, the Texans have to find one to give the team another youth infusion on the defensive line.

Prediction: There are plenty of big bodies and 0 techniques in this draft.  The Texans need to figure out which one they want. Texans find their guy after the third round.


Outside Linebacker

Another position the Texans need to find with Brooks Reed and Whitney Mercilus as the only two outside linebackers that the defense can depend on. A pass rusher would be the best bet, especially in passing situations to replace Reed on those downs. Pass rush was a huge issue for the team and there has been zero done in the offseason, to this point, to bring more pass rushers to the roster.

Prediction: The Texans draft in the 4th or 5th round. 


Tight End

With Owen Daniels not getting younger and Garrett Graham the only other tight end on the roster that contributed significantly for the team in 2012, do the Texans look for their blocking tight end or the one that breaks the mold as a real match up issue for safeties? Talk has one of the top tight ends sliding down the draft in the first round and could possibly find a home in Houston, which could increase the weapons on the field for Matt Schaub. Finding a tight end could be a move aimed towards the future, but could pay dividends down the road when Daniels’ time is up in Houston.

Prediction: The Texans might get a bargain in the first, but look for the most athletic tight end to be found late during the third day. 



No Need to Reach


Offensive Tackle

Analyst are quick to write off third year right tackle Derek Newton and in recent weeks “mock drafts” have had the Texans taking an offensive tackle. With the exception of Antoine Caldwell, the Texans’ offensive line is intact from the divisional playoff game and should be ready to pick up where they left off teaching wise for the 2013 season. The offensive line needs another season together before more changes happen, and even if a tackle was taken early it would be hard to see that player getting significant playing time early.

Prediction: There are bigger needs on this team than the offensive line, the line needs a chance to play more than one season together. Depth will be found late in the third day. 



Matt Schaub still has a shelf life in Houston for at least two more seasons, and there is no clear replacement in sight. There will be quarterbacks to look at and maybe think about being the guy for the next 10 seasons for the Texans. There will be some available but none of the quarterback prospects do not feel like “can’t miss” prospects. This is not the year to find the future quarterback for the franchise.


Prediction: No need to reach, the 2014 NFL Draft is where the future quarterback for the Texans lies.  There might be ONE quarterback the Texans can’t afford to pass on in the 2013 NFL Draft. 


You can follow Patrick on Twitter.  He is the Editor of State of the Texans.



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