The Houston Texans are in rare waters with the third overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.
To say this draft is critical to the success of the Houston Texans is an understatement. For the first time since 2019, the Texans are slated to pick in the draft’s first round. With such a high draft pick, it’s nerve-wracking for Texans fans who are itching for success to return.
Some of the top names coming out of the draft that the Houston Texans have been “mocked” to take have been Aidan Hutchinson, Evan Neal, Kayvon Thibodeaux, Ahmad Gardner, Derek Stingley Jr., and Kyle Hamilton.
As for the two teams ahead of Houston, Jacksonville will most likely go with Evan Neal, and the Lions will go with Aidan Hutchinson.
This situation would leave the Texans with their choice of having Kayvon Thibodeaux, Derek Stingley Jr., and Kyle Hamilton, barring a trade that takes them out of the third pick. Thibodeaux will likely slide out of the top five, and Stingley Jr. only played three games because of surgery on his foot. So that leaves potentially Kyle Hamilton, or does it?
Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner could be the surprise pick for the Houston Texans
What if Ahmad Gardner is the pick at three instead of Kyle Hamilton? Here is why this is a possibility. At the combine, Lovie Smith spoke about the draft and Justin Reid.
When speaking about Reid, Smith talked about Reid being an outstanding player; a football guy wants to know every detail on why they do things, and that he loves that about players. Following all that, Smith adds that “We would be pretty happy if Justin ends up coming back with us.” Reid has also talked about coming back and playing for the Texans, which is encouraging.
This is one way of maybe looking over Kyle Hamilton for Ahmad Gardner. However, what stuck out in Smith’s press conference about how Gardner could be selected over Hamilton was what Smith had to say about what he looks for at the cornerback position.
Smith said, “You can find a six-foot corner that’s faster than most people that’s pretty special…we put a big emphasis on ball skills… So [the] main object is to score and take the ball away won’t bring anyone in if they don’t like to tackle…”
All of this is lines up with Gardner’s anthropometrics. Currently listed at 6’2, had 99 total tackles, had nine career interceptions, and only let up two career touchdowns. Gardner is a player the Texans could use and a player that Smith would enjoy on his defense with his takeaway mentality.