Could Julie’n Davenport start as a rookie?

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports /

I’m not sure Julie’n Davenport is going to be able to start right away for the Houston Texans.

The Texans were able to take care of one of their needs during this year’s NFL draft as they selected offensive tackle Julie’n Davenport in the fourth round.

The problem is that Davenport may not be ready to step in right away and help since he comes from a small school and is a little raw.

Justis Mosqueda of Bleacher Report believes that Texans’ rookie offensive tackle Julie’n Davenport has a chance to start right away.

"The team tipped its hand of wanting to replace Newton when it drafted Bucknell tackle Julie’n Davenport, a Senior Bowl and combine invite, in the fourth round. Close to 6’7″ with a 7.57-second three-cone and a 4.69-second short shuttle, Davenport is an incredible athlete, even if he’s raw.If he can make big strides in training camp, Davenport could start at right tackle this year. Remember, the Texans parted ways with a future second-round pick for the Cleveland Browns to eat a part of the Brock Osweiler contract, just for Houston to be the only franchise in the NFL to not sign an outside free agent in 2017. They want to free up future cap space, and kicking Newton’s contract to the curb sooner rather than later will help them in that effort."

As much as Derek Newton has been a disappointment since signing a new contract with the Texans in 2015, I don’t believe Houston will or even should cut him this year.

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Mosqueda is right, cutting Newton would free up cap room for the Texans, but it would also create $2.2 million in dead money against the cap if they parted ways with him this offseason.

Now if the Texans wait until 2018 to release Newton, they would have to deal with $1.5 million in dead money and 2019 would be $750K in dead money.  His contract runs out in 2020.

Newton’s future will ultimately hinge on how well Davenport adjusts to the NFL as a rookie as well as what kind of depth they have along the offensive line.

I’m sure the Texans would love it if Davenport could start as a rookie.  But it’s far from a certain thing. Right now the right tackle position is Newton’s to lose.

I give Davenport a 20 percent chance of starting as a rookie.

Comment below and let me know if you think Davenport will start right away.