Texans look to strike gold after an impressive draft combine
The Texans had many holes to fill coming into this off-season. The first under new head coach DeMeco Ryans, they have improved through free agency and look to double down in the upcoming draft.
The Texans have two first-round picks in the top 15 (No. 2 & 12) which will define the franchise for the next several years. Pick No. 2 will most likely be a quarterback as the Davis Mills era appears over. I believe that at No. 12, the Texans need to go for the best player available on either side of the line. But after the first round, the question remains, what is their strategy for day two?
Day 2 will be the backbone of the roster for years to come
The Texans hold three picks on day two (33, 65, and 73 via Cleveland). The biggest question is how should these picks be approached. Again, I believe that in this year's draft, they need to go with the best player available at each pick rather than focusing on specific positions. At No. 33 there will be a gold mine of talent still on the board. With going best available in mind, I'd love to see the Texans draft Jalin Hyatt out of the University of Tennessee.
Hyatt was an absolute star for the Volunteers this season hauling in 67 catches for 1,267 yards and 15 touchdowns. He has lightning speed, running a 4.40 40-yard dash, and is a crisp route runner. An effective run blocker and good at creating space, he has the speed and upside to become a future #1 receiver for the Texans.
At No. 65, I believe they could steal a future starting guard in Andrew Voorhees out of USC. He's a very experienced, high-IQ player and is an exceptional run blocker. His position IQ is further bolstered in his scouting report from NFL.com, as they describe his excellent feel for the A-Gap. Over 902 snaps he allowed only eleven hurries, two hits, and one sack.
What I found most impressive was his combine performance with a torn ACL. He put out an offensive line-best 38 reps on the bench press. He has a second-round grade, but a torn ACL may cause his stock to fall a bit. If he's available at No. 65, Houston has a steal. This guy has heart and will have a big chip on his shoulder.
Finally, at No. 73, I believe they should pick Iowa Tight End Sam LaPorta, even after signing Dalton Schultz to a one-year deal. Over the last two seasons with the Hawkeyes, he had 111 passes for 1,327 yards and four touchdowns and is tough to bring down after the catch. If Schultz doesn't pan out, you have an excellent back-up plan in LaPorta.