Who Should the Texans Draft?

Losing is never a good thing, but teams that were out of playoff contention early can take solace in getting to pick first in the draft.

Thanks to such a poor season the Houston Texans will have the No 11 pick in the first round of the draft.

The first round pick is the most important round (for obvious reasons); teams expect whomever they pick to be inserted into the starting line-up fairly quick. Deciding who to take with the first pick cold have a profound effect on a team the following season.

However, the hard part can be in deciding how you want to utilize that pick. Do you go for the absolute best player available or do you try to cover your biggest need first? Whichever way Houston goes come April the decision is going to be tough.

Should Gary Kubiak look to pick up the best player available then the Texans will be looking at wide receiver Julio Jones of Alabama and outside linebacker Von Miller from Texas A&M.

Jones is a nice, tall receiver that is no stranger to the limelight having played for and won a national championship with Alabama. In his last season he caught 78 passes from Crimson Tide quarterback Greg McElroy for 1133 yards and seven touchdowns; so obviously he knows how to use the physical abilities that he has.

However, with Andre Johnson as the team’s No 1 and Jacoby Jones and Kevin Walter as the team’s secondary receivers there really is not much of a need. It’s always good to have the team stacked with talent, but there are other needs that are a bit more pressing.

The defense, especially the secondary needs help. Thanks to the league’s last place pass defense team the run defense was not too bad (13th overall); as bad as the pass defense was team’s hardly bothered to try and run on the Texans. The team has hired Wade Phillips to revamp the defense, and in his new 3-4 scheme the team will have a few needs.

The team already has a pair of the best young linebackers in the game in Brian Cushing and DeMeco Ryans. Texas A&M’s Von Miller could be an excellent addition to an already good corps, possibly making the linebacker group in Houston the most dangerous one in the NFL. His junior year in college he led the nation in sacks with 17. He is already familiar with the 3-4 with A&M switching to it last season.

As good a player as Miller is they have two needs that are much more pressing, the secondary and a good nose tackle. A secondary that gives up close to 300 yards a game over the course of the season sorely needs an upgrade. With the switch to the 3-4 the team will need a big man at nose tackle to clog up the middle.

The bad thing is that there really is not one projected to be available where the Texans are currently drafting. Patrick Peterson from LSU and Prince Amukamara from Nebraska are both expected to go in the top five. The only other one expected to go in the first round is Brandon Harris out of Miami. There are a handful of good defensive linemen available around the 11th pick, but none that are rated specifically as a nose tackle.

So then the next question becomes do the Texans try to trade up for one of the top cornerbacks, trade down for multiple picks (and get multiple good players but not necessarily first year starters), or take the best available player?

Or will there be a lockout and it really won’t matter anyway?
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