An EDGE rusher could be available in the third round for the Houston Texans.
Depending on how the Houston Texans pick with the third selection of the 2022 NFL Draft, the pass rush is still an excellent place for the team to work on repairing the pass rush, as they are currently the holders of the 37th overall pick in the second round, and they also have two third-round picks in their possession.
This is where EDGE rusher Kingsley Enagbare of South Carolina comes into the picture, as the Texans must add a pass rusher to their defensive line for the best future of the franchise.
In ’21 the defensive end had 29 solo tackles, 4.5 sacks, one forced fumble and two passes defensed in his senior season. The 6’4″ EDGE rusher for his career totaled 15 sacks, with his three previous season sack totals being 1.0 (2018), 3.5 (2019) and 6.0 (2020).
As a junior in ’20, Enagbare had a really solid season with 16 solo tackles, six sacks, and three forced fumbles.
Of his 4.5 sacks in ’21, 2.5 of them were against SEC opponents with a half-sack against the eventual national champion Georgia Bulldogs, plus one sack each against Tennessee and Vanderbilt.
Pro Football Network
in a draft scouting report had this to say about the
"“His play speed combined with his relentless motor ensures he’s disruptive not only as a pass rusher but hunting down ball carriers.”"
If he can get back to the sack numbers he had as a junior, and the forced fumbles he caused that season as well, he could become a havoc maker for the team that drafts him, and it could be the Texans.
Houston Texans: Can Enagbare overcome some negatives entering the draft?
Enagbare was a two-year starter for the Gamecocks, and from the overall reading of various scouting reports of the EDGE rusher, there seems to be be a lot of discussion on he can be very good at times, but his negatives could hamper his positives.
Bleacher Report in a draft profile of Enagbare say his negatives include:
"“Below-average acceleration when attacking the edge. … Poor bend and flexibility. … Below-average balance. Struggles to recover after being knocked off his initial path.”"
Every player in the 2022 NFL Draft will have negatives connected to their name in a draft profile, even the player who is drafted No. 1 overall, but those three negatives are very fixable, and if he can join Lovie Smith’s defense and work with the veteran head coach, who knows how much his overall play can improve.
Some believe Enagbare is a third-round pick, so on Day 2 of the draft, the Texans currently have 67th and the 80th overall pick, so there is an opportunity to either draft their first EDGE rusher of the draft, or add a second one if the Houston Texans take a pass rusher in the first or second round.
The Texans could be a defensive-oriented team in their first season with Smith as the head coach — he was the defensive coordinator last season — and if that is the case, the discussion in selecting Enagbare could make sense for the Houston Texans as their pass rush needs more depth and a lot of work going into the ’22 offseason.