Let's Talk About the Draft

Discussion in 'College Football & the NFL Draft' started by Texsker, Mar 17, 2010.

  1. Texsker

    Texsker Rookie

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    I haven't posted much here over the past year. I'm a pretty new Texans fan who just moved to Austin, so I'm trying to jump in head first this year after a season in which I didn't have an opportunity to see many games.

    In looking at the depth chart and the upcoming Draft, I've written up a little analysis of what I believe the Texans will do in the first round. Some may disagree with my basic premise that Houston has essentially been forced into taking a cornerback. If so, I'd welcome any feedback. I'm hoping that this post will get some Draft discussion going.


    The Texans enter the 2010 Draft with a number of positions in need of attention. In the months leading up to the Draft, most analysts projected that Houston was likely to draft one of three positions in the first round-nose tackle, cornerback or free safety. However, my opinion is that the loss of starting CB Dunta Robinson to the Falcons, in addition to the failure to lure free agent Leigh Bodden from the Patriots, has subsequently forced the Texans’ hand.

    Houston finds itself, following the loss of Robinson, with one of the weakest cornerback groups and secondaries overall in the entire NFL. In a division that features arguably the League’s best quarterback in Peyton Manning, the Texans’ top corner is second-year player Glover Quin-not exactly an enviable scenario. Veteran Jacques Reeves, the Texans' other projected starter, is merely average. 2009 sixth-round selection Brice McCain is a smaller corner who appears better suited to a nickel role, and back-ups Fred Bennett, Antwaun Molden and Mark Parson are not front-line NFL corners.

    The Texans therefore seem to be in a position of having to draft for need instead of being able to focus on taking the best available player, as the team absolutely must conclude the 2010 Draft with a cornerback capable of starting immediately.

    Taking a nose tackle like Brian Price or Dan Williams in the first round would force the Texans to have to find a starting cornerback in the 2nd or 3rd rounds, which, while not impossible, is a much more difficult proposition in a draft generally thought to include only 2-3 elite corners.

    I felt that the Texans needed to find a minimum of two new defensive starters among the nose tackle, cornerback and free safety positions through a combination of free agency and the 2010 Draft. Their failure to be active and/or successful in the free agent market in any of those critical need areas likely means that those two new starters will have to be found in the Draft.

    The 2009 Draft for the Texans was largely predictable, as Houston’s love for and need for strong-side linebacker Brian Cushing was certainly no secret. 2010 appears to be very similar in that a single player (CB Kyle Wilson of Boise State) has been projected almost universally by analysts to end up in Houston. Should Wilson fall to the Texans, I can’t see them passing on him, even if defensive linemen Dan Williams and Brian Price are still on the board at #20.

    What do the Texans do if Wilson is off the board at #20? My feeling is that they would move to the next corner on their board (presumably Alabama’s Kareem Jackson). The burden on the Texans to land a starting cornerback in this Draft is immense, and failure to do so could have potentially catastrophic consequences for the team this season.
     
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  2. HOU-TEX

    HOU-TEX Ah, Football!

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  3. nero THE zero

    nero THE zero Hall of Fame

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    The only way I see them going corner in the first is if Ryan Matthews is already off the board.

    According to the tea leaves, they're pretty set on him.
     
  4. Texsker

    Texsker Rookie

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    Yes, and it's pretty much being used to talk about specific players and about the Draft in general. I don't see much talk about the Texans' draft over there.
     
  5. Texsker

    Texsker Rookie

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    Maybe I'm missing something, but I don't see the wisdom in taking a running back in the first round. There are good backs to be had throughout the Draft, and the Texans are far worse at other positions.

    Slaton and Foster aren't the best combo in the NFL by any means, but they're surely better than what the Texans have at some other positions. I can't see how taking a RB in round #1 makes Houston a substantially better team, when they have so many defensive holes to fill.

    I'm not doubting your info, and I know Houston likes Matthews, but that seems like a very questionable move when their cornerback depth looks as bad as it does.
     
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  6. HOU-TEX

    HOU-TEX Ah, Football!

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    And would your tea leaves be coming from under McClain's 3rd chin? It's not like it'd upset me to choose a RB in the 1st, but I'll beleive it when I see it rather than putting stock into what the Gobbler says.

    I might've come across like an ass in my post. If so, I apologize, it wasn't my intention. :)
     
  7. Texsker

    Texsker Rookie

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    No problem. I did check out the draft board, but, as I said, it seems to be used more for discussion of the draft in general. Hopefully people don't mind a few draft-related posts on the main board, especially since it really is the most important thing going on in the world of Texans football right now. Plus, some don't even check that other board.
     
  8. nero THE zero

    nero THE zero Hall of Fame

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    That's working under the assumption that your first round CB (i.e. Kyle Wilson, Joe Haden) is significantly better than your second round CB (i.e. Devin McCourty, Dom Franks). This draft is supposed to be very deep in starter quality CB. If you feel that the difference between, say, Ryan Matthews and Montario Hardesty is significantly greater than Kyle Wilson and Devin McCourty, then your team is better off with Matthews + McCourty than Wilson + Hardesty.

    I don't know if the Texans feel that way, but I do know that (1) they're pretty excited about Matthews and (2) the CB class is supposed to be pretty deep into the second round.
     


  9. JB

    JB Old Curmudgeon

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    And how do you know this?
     
  10. nero THE zero

    nero THE zero Hall of Fame

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    Haha, no.
     
  11. Texsker

    Texsker Rookie

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    I'm not an expert on the corners in this draft, but based on what I've read, it seems that Haden, Wilson and Jackson are the top tier, and that others are perceived to be a drop down. I just don't know if Houston can go into the 2010 season with Glover Quin and Jacques Reeves as the starting CBs and hope to contend for the AFC South.

    My feeling is that the Texans need to find the cornerback equivalent of Brian Cushing in this draft -- an instant impact starter. The longer they wait, the harder that becomes to find. Plus, it's not just that they're picking in the 2nd round -- they're picking 20th in the 2nd, which is a big difference from selecting toward the top of the round.
     
  12. HOU-TEX

    HOU-TEX Ah, Football!

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    So, you're basing it on your own tea leaves? Mmkay, I'll still beleive it when I see it.
     
  13. nero THE zero

    nero THE zero Hall of Fame

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    Yes. I don't pretend to have any "inside info", and I hope I don't come off that way.
     
  14. Texsker

    Texsker Rookie

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    I haven't been following the local coverage as closely, but McClain is the only guy I see touting Matthews as the Texans' first-round choice. Every national analyst is projecting cornerback, and Kyle Wilson specifically.

    Maybe McClain's right, but I still don't see Houston going RB in round #1. Has any player fallen farther faster than Steve Slaton?
     
  15. Porky

    Porky Hall of Fame

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    There's more than one way to skin a cat. One way you can help your secondary is to make sure they aren't on the field as much. A back like Matthews will help a ton in those 4th quarters when the chips are down. Being able to grind out first downs and run time off the clock helps the secondary immensely in an indirect way. It's hard for Manning to beat you when he's sitting on the bench. :devilpig:
     
  16. nero THE zero

    nero THE zero Hall of Fame

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    LZ also has the Texans taking Matthews.
     
  17. steelbtexan

    steelbtexan Hall of Fame

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    There's not much of a drop off at CB between 1st rder Wilson and 2nd rders Ghee, Franks and McCourty. IMHO

    After watching the Texans RB's bumble,stumble and fumble all of last year RB would be my top priority.

    If Thomas is unavaiable at 20.
     
  18. Texsker

    Texsker Rookie

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    Well, with that mindset, I'd rather take OG Mike Iupati than Ryan Matthews. Give me a dominant OG to plug in, and my opinion is that you'll get more mileage out of Slaton and Foster with Iupati than you'd get with Slaton and Matthews without Iupati. Just my opinion.
     
  19. steelbtexan

    steelbtexan Hall of Fame

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    Agreed

    The draft is all that's really going on in the NFL at this time of year.
     
  20. Texsker

    Texsker Rookie

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    Well, aside from free agency, but the Texans haven't been super active in the free agent market. It's been pretty uneventful.
     

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