Mid-To-Late Round Pass Rushing Options For The Houston Texans

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May 8, 2014; New York, NY, USA; NFL commissioner Roger Goodell begins the draft and puts the Houston Texans on the clock at the start of the 2014 NFL draft at Radio City Music Hall. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Many mock drafts, including my own, have had the Houston Texans selecting a pass rushing linebacker with the 16th overall selection in the 2015 NFL. However, just a few weeks back all the mock drafts seemed to have the team focusing on the wide receiver position.

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The truth is, most of the predictions made are simply for fun and often times the fans, writers and experts on television have no clue what the thinking is inside each team’s war room. The Texans may be very satisfied with receiver DeAndre Hopkins (and they should be with him) and his supporting cast.

They may also believe outside linebacker Jadeveon Clowney will return quickly from his knee surgery and be an effective pass rushing compliment to the beast of a defensive end J.J. Watt. If this is the case the Texans may decide to select someone other than a pass rusher or a receiver.

While the consensus is that this draft is rather deep at the receiver position, it also seems to be a common thought that most of the pass rushers will be gone in round one, early round two, at the latest.

Maybe there is some truth there, truly effective players who can contribute immediately for a team may be gone fast, but does that mean no gems can be unearthed in later rounds? Perhaps the Texans will believe the best bet is to see what they have in former first rounder Whitney Mercilus as a full-time starter, while allowing Clowney to show how well he has progressed.

With this thinking the draft strategy may be to take a player later in the draft who may need some seasoning. Doing so could allow the team to not only build for the future, but give themselves leverage for future contract talks with pass rushers about to hit the open market.

So what players out there may be options for the Texans to groom for the future? Here is a look at five potential players outside of rounds one and two that the Texans could look to bring in.

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