Houston Texans Draft: Josh Palmer could be the answer in third round

Tennessee wide receiver Josh Palmer (5)102420 Ut Bama Gameaction
Tennessee wide receiver Josh Palmer (5)102420 Ut Bama Gameaction /
Josh Palmer, Houston Texans
Tennessee wide receiver Josh Palmer (5) 102420 Ut Bama Gameaction /

The Houston Texans need to replace some players on their offense in the 2021 NFL Draft, and one spot that they could start that rebuild with is at wide receiver. This is where the 67th overall pick comes into play, and remember the name Josh Palmer when it comes time for the Houston Texans to make their first selection of the draft next Friday night.

Houston lets Will Fuller walk this offseason, and general manager Nick Caserio isn’t afraid to make a roster move, as much of the 2020 roster of the Texans has been asked to leave or just didn’t return. This is why the 2021 NFL Draft is so important, because the Texans can’t afford to make too many mistakes, and they need players who can play snaps in Week 1.

Looking at Josh Palmer of Tennessee, the wide receiver would fit in nicely on the offense of Houston Texans offensive coordinator Tim Kelly, and head coach David Culley. With Brandin Cooks as the top threat on wide receiver depth chart, the closer this draft gets, the more it seems like Palmer could be on the board early in the third round, which would be a gift for Houston.

Palmer is just 21 years old and stands at 6’1” and weighs 210 pounds, and his 40-yard dash time this offseason was 4.51 seconds. Pro Football Focus ranks Palmer 71st overall in their pre-draft rankings, and he has his best PFF grade this past season with the Tennessee Volunteers at 70.7 in 10 games played.

The analysis of Palmer via PFF is the following as they have given him a third-round projection:

"“Palmer has the size, suddenness, ball skills and play strength to be a starter in the league. His tape is better than stats suggest.”"

Patriot Maven of Sports Illustrated gives Palmer a pre-draft projection of a fifth-rounder, so at some point when the Houston Texans make their pick in the third, fourth or fifth rounds, Palmer could be on the board. As for NFL.com, their draft profile of Palmer says he could be a “solid NFL backup who could become a starter.”

Houston Texans are going to need wide receiver production in 2021

Whether Deshaun Watson or Tyrod Taylor is the starting quarterback for the Houston Texans when the regular season starts in Week 1, there is no doubt the wide receivers will play great importance for this franchise, maybe more so than any year, especially if Watson isn’t on the field.

This is where Palmer comes into the mix as he’ll get instant time on the field because let’s just be honest with ourselves, the 2021 season is a season to see where the Texans stand in the league, and it won’t be at the top of the AFC South.

This rebuild of the Texans is in the early stages, and with the possibility to add a player like Josh Palmer it would be tough to overlook him if they are interested in a wide receiver at some point in this draft.

Palmer is coming off a season where in 10 games caught 32 passes for 475 yards on 60 targets. Those receptions included four touchdowns, and he averaged 14.8 yards per reception.

In all three of his seasons at Tennessee, Palmer caught for over 400 yards with his 2018 season, including 23 receptions for 484 yards and two touchdowns. In 2019, Palmer’s numbers included 34 receptions for 457 yards and one touchdown reception.

There are varying opinions of Palmer, whether it be PFF or NFL.com, but the one thing that the Houston Texans need to do is add to their wide receiver depth chart for 2021.

If they rank Palmer as high as PFF does, well, this could be the player the Houston Texans select with their first pick of the 2021 NFL Draft next Friday. Then again, there are other areas of need where the Texans could improve their roster as well with that same selection.