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Old 01-04-2008   #1
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Default How do you select top 3 needs?

I think most of us agree that left tackle, running back and corner are Texans biggest needs. Should team take best need player available each round of draft? Or should selection be made based on what is available in later rounds to plug hole? Lets go with the picks we have with no second just to make it more interesting. We are also guessing on which juniors will come out and Jamaal from U.T. surprised me by foregoing senior year.

To me, it looks as if RB and CB have more players of good or better quality than does LT. In free agency, only one name stands out that would probably keep team from drafting that position. That is Asante Samuel at corner. While I think it is possible Texans could sign, I'd say not probable. I see no RB (and I know some disagree) or LT that would plug a starter hole & eliminate need to draft.

Our needs at CB and RB could be addressed in 3rd and 4th rounds with LT focused on at #18 due to lack of player options. Having said that, does having a probable "excellent" pick such as Ryan Clady, Sam Baker at LT or J. Stewart at RB make one say go for that guy, we will plug in what we can get later?

Should the focus be on landing that one very good player to fill a need or should it be on getting best players to fill the three holes over all?
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Old 01-04-2008   #2
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

I know we need a LT/CB(esp with D-robs injury)and running back


But If a legit LT isn't around, I kinda like to have a nice top notch safety if one is available in the 1st round.

3rd round then go corner back or running back.


I wish I could open up the crystal ball and know if Ahman green/Charles Spencer (if he is the answer) and D-rob would be back next season


we need OLb's also and that wouldn't hurt me to have one early also that can cover and blitz the QB
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Old 01-04-2008   #3
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

Our "priority" needs are I agree RB, LT, and CB with a few slightly less urgent needs coming in below those (LB and SS). I also consider C to be a priority need so I add that to your list as well.

I set a goal of filling at least one of those needs (and preferably two of them) in free agency before the draft ever gets here.

I think that I'd go into free agency looking for help at CB and I wouldn't be shy about spending the money to do it right. Worst case scenario this guy is going to have to replace Dunta Robinson in our lineup so think about that for a moment. Think about what Dunta Robinson means to our team. This isn't a year to go out and bring back Lewis Sanders. This isn't a year to try and coach up DeMarcus Faggins some more. This is a year to bring in a free agent that can make a difference right away. Fred Bennett will be a second year starter next season and we can't afford to put a rookie on the opposite side of him. That would make this year look good in comparison.

After I spend big to bring a legitimate starting CB here I start looking for a free agent C or possibly a G who I think can make the conversion to C.

About my first round pick I think I'm going to try and keep it and not try to trade down, assuming I think I can get a player at 18 that I want. I try and bag a starting LT and a RB in this draft. If I have to I am willing to try and bundle second day picks (and possibly a player if the right name comes up) to get back up into the second round so I can get both a LT and a RB this year.
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Old 01-04-2008   #4
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

I try to estimate total impact.

A left tackle would bolster this offensive line, thus helping the running game and time of possession, the passing game through playaction, and the defense by putting up points and giving the defense some room to gamble (T.O.P. already mentioned as well).

A CB or safety is a big need as well, which would help the front seven take more risks, give the front seven more time to pressure the QB, and provide a disincentive to the opponent in the passing game. This, in turn, puts the ball back in the offense's hands, but then they have to do something with it, or the defense will be worn out later anyway.

A RB would help the running game, but only if he can overcome the lack of talent on the line. The running game is an integral part of successful offense, but IMO, it comes more from the offensive line than from the back, though it takes both. You put Adrian Peterson behind that Vikings offensive line, and you have something special. Otherwise, he's still good, but not the same. Similarly, Chester Taylor can do very well behind their offensive line. Olandis Gary behind Denver's offensive line was a good back. Clinton Portis was a phenomenal back. Portis is still a good back, but he's not putting up the numbers that he did in Denver, for instance. The examples can go on and on, but for me, it basically boils down to one thing - the offensive line is the foundation for offensive success upon which you build. Skill position players will function so much more efficiently behind a good offensive line.
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Old 01-04-2008   #5
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

Mine would be:

1) LT
2) Either a strong or free safety
3) Center

I am willing to see what Walker, Dayne, and Taylor can do next year. In the latter half of our season, the running game was the least of our problems. It would be a shame to pass up a chance to fill some gaping holes in our roster to build even more depth at the RB position. Our secondary and the entire left side of our o-line needs rebuilt far more desperately than our running game. That's just my two cents.
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Old 01-04-2008   #6
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hervoyel View Post
Our "priority" needs are I agree RB, LT, and CB with a few slightly less urgent needs coming in below those (LB and SS). I also consider C to be a priority need so I add that to your list as well.

I set a goal of filling at least one of those needs (and preferably two of them) in free agency before the draft ever gets here.

I think that I'd go into free agency looking for help at CB and I wouldn't be shy about spending the money to do it right. Worst case scenario this guy is going to have to replace Dunta Robinson in our lineup so think about that for a moment. Think about what Dunta Robinson means to our team. This isn't a year to go out and bring back Lewis Sanders. This isn't a year to try and coach up DeMarcus Faggins some more. This is a year to bring in a free agent that can make a difference right away. Fred Bennett will be a second year starter next season and we can't afford to put a rookie on the opposite side of him. That would make this year look good in comparison.

After I spend big to bring a legitimate starting CB here I start looking for a free agent C or possibly a G who I think can make the conversion to C.

About my first round pick I think I'm going to try and keep it and not try to trade down, assuming I think I can get a player at 18 that I want. I try and bag a starting LT and a RB in this draft. If I have to I am willing to try and bundle second day picks (and possibly a player if the right name comes up) to get back up into the second round so I can get both a LT and a RB this year.
I think you & I are on same page, but if the Mario extension goes through that lowers cap space to apprx. $22m-$27million. Draft picks and resigning our free agents such as Andre Davis and Dayne come out of that. Also, Weary will be a concern. Do we commit cap money to him or cut him and say come see us when you are healthy? I am guessing about $10 to 15 million will be available to sign other teams FA. I'd push hard to fill that hole at CB and know I could then sign a RB & LT in draft.

I do like your idea of trading up with lower picks to get a second. What would it take and who might be interested? That would give us #18 in first,a two and a three. By getting a CB starter in FA, we could then address three other needs in draft. I am hoping we have our starting center on our roster.
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Last edited by badboy; 01-04-2008 at 04:03 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 01-04-2008   #7
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

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Originally Posted by Hervoyel View Post
Our "priority" needs are I agree RB, LT, and CB with a few slightly less urgent needs coming in below those (LB and SS). I also consider C to be a priority need so I add that to your list as well.

I set a goal of filling at least one of those needs (and preferably two of them) in free agency before the draft ever gets here.

I think that I'd go into free agency looking for help at CB and I wouldn't be shy about spending the money to do it right. Worst case scenario this guy is going to have to replace Dunta Robinson in our lineup so think about that for a moment. Think about what Dunta Robinson means to our team. This isn't a year to go out and bring back Lewis Sanders. This isn't a year to try and coach up DeMarcus Faggins some more. This is a year to bring in a free agent that can make a difference right away. Fred Bennett will be a second year starter next season and we can't afford to put a rookie on the opposite side of him. That would make this year look good in comparison.

After I spend big to bring a legitimate starting CB here I start looking for a free agent C or possibly a G who I think can make the conversion to C.

About my first round pick I think I'm going to try and keep it and not try to trade down, assuming I think I can get a player at 18 that I want. I try and bag a starting LT and a RB in this draft. If I have to I am willing to try and bundle second day picks (and possibly a player if the right name comes up) to get back up into the second round so I can get both a LT and a RB this year.
This is a sound plan Herv. I am on board with it.
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Old 01-04-2008   #8
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

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Originally Posted by eriadoc View Post
I try to estimate total impact.

A left tackle would bolster this offensive line, thus helping the running game and time of possession, the passing game through playaction, and the defense by putting up points and giving the defense some room to gamble (T.O.P. already mentioned as well).

A CB or safety is a big need as well, which would help the front seven take more risks, give the front seven more time to pressure the QB, and provide a disincentive to the opponent in the passing game. This, in turn, puts the ball back in the offense's hands, but then they have to do something with it, or the defense will be worn out later anyway.

A RB would help the running game, but only if he can overcome the lack of talent on the line. The running game is an integral part of successful offense, but IMO, it comes more from the offensive line than from the back, though it takes both. You put Adrian Peterson behind that Vikings offensive line, and you have something special. Otherwise, he's still good, but not the same. Similarly, Chester Taylor can do very well behind their offensive line. Olandis Gary behind Denver's offensive line was a good back. Clinton Portis was a phenomenal back. Portis is still a good back, but he's not putting up the numbers that he did in Denver, for instance. The examples can go on and on, but for me, it basically boils down to one thing - the offensive line is the foundation for offensive success upon which you build. Skill position players will function so much more efficiently behind a good offensive line.
After reviewing Texans 2007 stats, it seems the defense really trailed the O despite the #1 picks and high quality players. If our offense remained exactly the same but we went hard on defense (CB in FA, OLB in 1st round and a DE to replace Anthony Weaver in 3rd) and then get a decent RB in fourth, would that translate to more Ws and the playoffs? My concern would be the D under R. Smith (see related thread) who has not overwhelmed fans or other teams for that matter. Also, another year with the Salaam/Black LT and our aging/often injured Dayne/Green backfield with no sure fire "player in waiting" behind them. Walker and Taylor are interesting but I don't want to start 08 with just those four backs.
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Old 01-04-2008   #9
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

Quote:
Originally Posted by badboy View Post
I think you & I are on same page, but if the Mario extension goes through that lowers cap space to apprx. $22m-$27million. Draft picks and resigning our free agents such as Andre David and Dayne come out of that. Also, Weary will be a concern. Do we commit cap money to him or cut him and say come see us when you are healthy? I am guessing about $10 to 15 million will be available to sign other teams FA. I'd push hard to fill that hole at CB and know I could then sign a RB & LT in draft.

I do like your idea of trading up with lower picks to get a second. What would it take and who might be interested? That would give us #18 in first,a two and a three. By getting a CB starter in FA, we could then address three other needs in draft. I am hoping we have our starting center on our roster.
Who is that? Flanagan, McKinney, White, Eslinger? Two are "long in the tooth," 2 are coming off major surgery, and 2 have potential but very limited playing experience. I hope Kubes/Smith will do something to address this area. JMHO!
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Old 01-04-2008   #10
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

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Originally Posted by adam View Post
Mine would be:

1) LT
2) Either a strong or free safety
3) Center

I am willing to see what Walker, Dayne, and Taylor can do next year. In the latter half of our season, the running game was the least of our problems. It would be a shame to pass up a chance to fill some gaping holes in our roster to build even more depth at the RB position. Our secondary and the entire left side of our o-line needs rebuilt far more desperately than our running game. That's just my two cents.
So, you are ok with the 3 backs you listed? In two years Dayne doesn't even exist until 1/2 through season. Taylor has not shown anything and while Walker looked for a few games not much to base on. I'm ok with them on roster but certainly want another option. I think Green will be at camp but not necessarily on final roster and I can say that about Taylor also.

As for Free Safety, Demps as Pro Bowl alternate did not impress you enough?
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Old 01-04-2008   #11
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

I just feel that we need an offensive lineman. We need a center, but since I have not seen a quality center in the first round, we need to get a tackle to protect Matt's blind side. Then it goes to the secondary and rb. I would prefer to pick up a quality db before a rb, because they are harder to find than running backs.
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Old 01-04-2008   #12
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

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Originally Posted by Insideop View Post
Who is that? Flanagan, McKinney, White, Eslinger? Two are "long in the tooth," 2 are coming off major surgery, and 2 have potential but very limited playing experience. I hope Kubes/Smith will do something to address this area. JMHO!
I think Flannagan is gone. McKinney proved that the team moved when he was healthy at center. Salaam said yesterday on 610 radio that McKinney seems to be rehabing well and is walking. I am hopeful that Eslinger will earn the back up role and he can play guard as I understand. I think White will be on the bubble. Note that McKinney will be 33 Oct 2008; not over the hill for a center who can play guard.
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Old 01-04-2008   #13
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

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I just feel that we need an offensive lineman. We need a center, but since I have not seen a quality center in the first round, we need to get a tackle to protect Matt's blind side. Then it goes to the secondary and rb. I would prefer to pick up a quality db before a rb, because they are harder to find than running backs.
I want a LT too but how many sacks did our LT position give up? I think it is possible that Kubes will try to squeeze another year out of Salaam. Right or wrong, he has started 30 of 32 games.
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Old 01-04-2008   #14
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

We have to go with defense, defense, and some more defense here.

Our offense ranked among the top ten in virtually many passing categories. I know we need a running back and some offensive line work but our defense is hurting here. Ranked 30th in the league. 30th!

DeMeco Ryans, Amobi Okoye, Fred Bennett and Mario Williams just do not scare opponents and I certainly don't blame them for not being scared. I'd hate to take them on individually. I'd be shaking but if I were an NFL caliber coach, I'd take on this defensive unit on anyday. Anyday.

There are holes to be exploited on every position in that unit. Bennett plays next to nobody (Dunta is out so let's keep that mentality). DeMeco Ryans plays in between two nobodies. I like Morlon and think compliments DeMeco but we've got to get the other side plugged up. Mario and Amobi can't lineup alongside eachother for everyplay nor can they both penetrate an offensive line of 5 players alone. They need more help. Don't even get me started on our laughable deep secondary. We have a FS? Really? I didn't know that. I'm aware that Earl will be returning but was he really the answer out there? Or is he just a good plug-in or stop-gap (however you guys call it) to have?

I really think that we have to go defense all the way. Signing a solid solid DT, DE, and second CB would be our only means of diverting to offensive picks via the draft. If Rashard Mendenhall is sitting there at #18 then you've got to take him as a BPA but we have got to go defense outside of a low risk 'stud' scenario that will allow us to divert outside of our defensive needs. FA is our best bet for filling our defensive needs this offseason but there's just no way we're going to land Haynesworth, Samuel (or the Raider CB), Briggs, and Allen. I'd be shocked if we even landed just one of them.

I'm glad I'm not a GM. He's got a real tough job doing this that just will probably backlash on him. I say defense is our problem not so much offense.
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Old 01-04-2008   #15
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

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I think Flannagan is gone. McKinney proved that the team moved when he was healthy at center. Salaam said yesterday on 610 radio that McKinney seems to be rehabing well and is walking. I am hopeful that Eslinger will earn the back up role and he can play guard as I understand. I think White will be on the bubble. Note that McKinney will be 33 Oct 2008; not over the hill for a center who can play guard.
The Texans move the ball better with Flanagan at Center, considering all variables.

I like Eslinger, too. Still have to see how he does with our line though.
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Old 01-04-2008   #16
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

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I want a LT too but how many sacks did our LT position give up? I think it is possible that Kubes will try to squeeze another year out of Salaam. Right or wrong, he has started 30 of 32 games.
I am saying a left tackle because Salaam is not our future at LT. There were plenty of times where he was getting handled by whomever he was blocking and the qb's had to get rid of the ball very quick. I like Salaam as a backup but not as a starter and I am very cautious in how Spencer will play from now on. If Spencer does manage to regain some of his ability then it can only help us by adding more depth on the line and possibly learning another position. I agree that we could squeeze another year out of him but that is delaying the inevitable and ultimately we will have to find a true solution at LT.
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Old 01-04-2008   #17
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

I think you have to go in more open minded than that. You need to go into FA saying "I need to fill: LT, CB, RB, OLB, FS, C." Then you have to look at which of those quality FA's are WILLING to become a Texan. Just because you have a ton of money to throw out for a CB doesn't mean Assante wants to be a Texan. The Titans have a lot of cap space I believe, and they have a strong D-line. Maybe Assante wants to join a team that will continue making him look good, and probably have as much of a chance at getting back to the playoffs as we do.

Take the best players that will fit your need in FA, and then whatever's left, you look for in the draft. At that point (to better answer your question) I think you take the BPA at the 18th spot, that fits one of your pressing needs. If there's not many LT's that look like they'll be left in the third, but you have to reach for an LT at the 18th to ensure you get one, then no...go for J Stewart, or someone that's not a reach. When the third round comes around, reevaluate then. Don't reach, b/c you never know what will happen later in the draft. Hell....Eric Winston could fall from the 1st to the 3rd, I know it sounds impossible, but....wait ... he did!
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Old 01-04-2008   #18
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

excellent posts all. but I think that Rick Smith knows that to maximize his draft picks he must pick the best player available so he will certainly address needs via free agency or in trades. that could include only one or all three, the more needs addressed going into the draft the more freedom to take bpa or trade down if the offer is right.

Time the Texans are on the clock (#18) their draft board could look something like this-

1. Kenny Phillips, FS 6-1 205 Miami

Can't pass on a playemaker like this if he's there. Don't beleive any of the top 10 teams take a FS. he would have to get past Arizona & Minnesota.

2. Sam Baker, OT 6-5 315

I know not everyone is crazy about Sam, but he has experience & technique to start not to mention seems like he would fit the offense being more athletic than the others.

3. Aqib Talib, CB 6-1 205

If he comes out he would be a cornerstone cb for years to come (barring injury). Dunta will return but nobody knows when, Aqib has excellent size & would compliment his game when he does return.

4. Rashard Mendenhall, RB 5-11 210 Illinois

Another underclassman with a decision to make. reminds me of Willis McGahee before his torn acl in Miami. the Texans might have selected him over his teammate Andre Johnson.

5. Calais Campbell, DE 6-7 280 Miami

Talk about the Texans having a pair of bookends. Calais has declared so he will be draft eligible, should be a top 15 pick but if he is the bpa & Rick Smith has taken care of buisness in free agency this would be another smart long term pick.
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Old 01-04-2008   #19
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

Quote:
Originally Posted by adam View Post
Mine would be:

1) LT
2) Either a strong or free safety
3) Center

I am willing to see what Walker, Dayne, and Taylor can do next year. In the latter half of our season, the running game was the least of our problems. It would be a shame to pass up a chance to fill some gaping holes in our roster to build even more depth at the RB position. Our secondary and the entire left side of our o-line needs rebuilt far more desperately than our running game. That's just my two cents.


i totally agree, though maybe put center 4th and get another cb......

we dont need a flashy, high draft pick RB, if we have a solid O line, it wont matter who is back there, it boggels my mind to see how many people THINK we need a RB... luckily i know richard smith a kubiak are on the same page as me. OT, saftey, cb

though i wouldnt mind takin a bada$$ DE if we get the chance, i mean why not, build a disgusting D line up......

edit: oh ya, and i think chris taylor is a baller.....
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Old 01-05-2008   #20
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Default Re: How do you select top 3 needs?

Quote:
Originally Posted by beerlover View Post
excellent posts all. but I think that Rick Smith knows that to maximize his draft picks he must pick the best player available so he will certainly address needs via free agency or in trades. that could include only one or all three, the more needs addressed going into the draft the more freedom to take bpa or trade down if the offer is right.

Time the Texans are on the clock (#18) their draft board could look something like this-

1. Kenny Phillips, FS 6-1 205 Miami

Can't pass on a playemaker like this if he's there. Don't beleive any of the top 10 teams take a FS. he would have to get past Arizona & Minnesota.

2. Sam Baker, OT 6-5 315

I know not everyone is crazy about Sam, but he has experience & technique to start not to mention seems like he would fit the offense being more athletic than the others.

3. Aqib Talib, CB 6-1 205

If he comes out he would be a cornerstone cb for years to come (barring injury). Dunta will return but nobody knows when, Aqib has excellent size & would compliment his game when he does return.

4. Rashard Mendenhall, RB 5-11 210 Illinois

Another underclassman with a decision to make. reminds me of Willis McGahee before his torn acl in Miami. the Texans might have selected him over his teammate Andre Johnson.

5. Calais Campbell, DE 6-7 280 Miami

Talk about the Texans having a pair of bookends. Calais has declared so he will be draft eligible, should be a top 15 pick but if he is the bpa & Rick Smith has taken care of buisness in free agency this would be another smart long term pick.
I think I like the top four. Never seen the fifth.
Can we get more than 2 of them?
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