Monthly Archives: March 2017

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It’s no secret that it’s been a tad quiet during the first couple of weeks of free agency for the Texans. Sure, the Osweiler trade was an explosive story. And it was good to see Ryan Griffin get re-signed. But the fans and media have been getting restless watching AFC South foes nab free agents in their bid to challenge the Texans.

It’s worth noting though, that despite the lack of an early splash and the departure of some names-you-know, there are some intriguing Texans who could make a nice contribution in 2017 at some positions of need.
Let’s start with Kendall Lamm. The tackle has played in 30 games already and started seven. He’s mostly the sixth offensive lineman when the Texans ‘heavy up’ on offense. He’s here for a reason and should be interesting to observe as Houston looks for help during Derek Newton’s continued rehab from two knee injuries.

Robert Nelson is another improving player. He’s seen action at corner, made a nice pick off Andrew Luck at the end of the half in the home Indy tilt and just might find his way onto the field in some key situations in 2017. Remember this about corner; last year A.J. Bouye signed a ‘by-the-way’ one-year deal as a depth player. No one is saying Nelson is on track for Bouye’s type of year, but he’s certainly worth watching. Plus, this draft is shoulder-deep in corners and safeties.
If the Texans played Sunday and started their base defense, you just might see Brennan Scarlett at outside linebacker. He played in seven games last year. I can’t dazzle you with stats but he was impossible not to notice last preseason, making plays like this.

Those are three under-the-radar type players who could help. And let’s not forget that key 2016 contributors like Will Fuller, Braxton Miller, D.J. Reader, Corey Moore and Joel Health are all back, to name a few.

The Texans will also be signing some players in the final waves of free agency, not to mention the haul they’ll go fishing for in the draft.

You’re looking at a team that finished first in defense AND gets J.J. Watt back. That fact and the maturation of an offense that should have better play at quarterback will automatically make the Texans better.

Is it good enough to win the division and make the postseason again? That’s why we’re here – to watch the story unfold.

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Walking around Indianapolis during the Combine you see so many familiar NFL faces. It’s also like taking a stroll through Texans history. Just this morning I ran into Demeco Ryans, Wade Phillips, and former linebacker coach Johnny Holland.

I also said hello to Dave Ragone who is the organization’s highest drafted quarterback since David Carr. And Ragone was taken in 2003! That’s a huge question about this offseason. Will the Texans take a quarterback in the early rounds of the draft?

Bob McNair said prior to the Super Bowl that Houston will think about a QB in this draft. But, of course, no one will mention what round. Many of us thought that in 2014, Bill O’Brien’s first year, the Texans would nab a quarterback in the first or second round. They took Tom Savage in the fourth.

 

This season they could draft one higher but they could also try to get better at the position through some well publicized hypotheticals in free agency or even through trade. The picture will clear up in the next few weeks.

The ‘word on the street’ among national media folks here is that better QB play makes the Texans a sure fire Super Bowl contender. We’ve interviewed many on Texans Radio and Texans TV and you can check out all that content here on HoustonTexans.com.

Most of the coaches and General Managers have met the media and most have had nothing major to say because free agency hasn’t even started yet. They are here to evaluate college players before embarking on a free agent blitz that begins next week. Once you get your harvest from that, it’s draft time. And, even though no one will talk about needs, the draft preferences will be heavily determined by what teams pick up on the open market.

Walking through radio row here, media from all markets ask our crew about quarterback, of course, but A.J. Bouye’s name keeps coming up as well. He’s set to become a free agent next week and is a hot property. Every team looking for help at corner has media here hungry for info on Bouye. The other big questions for us concern J.J. Watt’s health and Jadeveon Clowney’s emergence. And the fact that the Texans had a win at New England in their sights but didn’t close the deal.

The division is going to be the most competitive since its inception in 2002. With Doug Marrone in Jacksonville they are perfectly capable of a Titan-like jump in performance in 2017. Every team feels like they have a shot. That adds to the importance of getting things right in the next two months so the Texans can achieve a three-peat.

The NFL scouting combine is the unofficial start of the league year and the highest attended media event outside of the Super Bowl. It left Spring Training in the dust in the national sports consciousness years ago and continues to grow. Keep checking back for more information.

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The Texans now know which seven picks they’ll have in the 2017 NFL Draft.

Houston owns the 25th overall pick in the first round, and they have a susequent pick in every other round. The Draft begins on Thursday, April 27 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The Texans didn’t receive any compensatory selections, and their sixth round pick was acquired from the Bears in a 2015 trade of tight end Khari Lee. Washington owns the Texans’ original sixth-rounder, as they received that and a 2016 first-round selection in exchange for the pick Houston used to select receiver Will Fuller last spring.

Below is a complete list of the Texans’ 2017 NFL Draft order.