Oct 18, 2015; Jacksonville, FL, USA; Houston Texans tackle Duane Brown (76) blocks during the second half of a football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
7. Duane Brown – Offensive Tackle, Virginia Tech; 2008 1st round 26th overall selection
The most important position in football? Quarterback. The second most? Well, that could be a toss up between either a great pass rusher, or a stellar left tackle to cover the blind side.
In 2008, the Texans already had a great pass rusher in Mario Williams, and believed in their quarterback Matt Schaub. That meant that when they were sitting there in the draft with the 26th overall selection, the tackle out of Virginia Tech, Duane Brown, made all the sense in the world.
Houston took the 6’4″, 303 pound lineman and he became a starter immediately. Only injuries have kept him from being out there for the opening drive as Brown now has 115 starts in 115 games played for the Texans.
He has been part of some great running teams, and some good passing teams as well. Plus, at only 30-years of age, there is still a lot of tread left on the tires for Brown.
First round picks need to be impact players, missing on one can hurt a team for years. In 2008, Houston didn’t miss.
Next: A defensive end to set the tone