Houston Texans: 6 Players to target in the third round of the NFL Draft
By Peter Manfre
Jack Campbell LB, Iowa
The consensus on this year's linebacker class is that it doesn't have high-end talent, such as a first-round graded linebacker. Where it lacks in top-end talent, it makes up for throughout the second and third rounds with depth. That being said, Iowa's Jack Campbell is a player tailor-made for being the leader of DeMeco Ryans' defense.
I know, I have harped over and over about the different types of leaders Ryans wants, and Campbell fits the bill to a tee. He is an incredibly cerebral linebacker who is hard-nosed, gritty and loves playing the game.
Schematically, the 6'5", 243-pound linebacker is also a perfect fit to fill in next to last year's third-round selection Christian Harris. Harris is a coverage linebacker and smaller; however, he isn't the bruiser Campbell is, who can cover pretty well in the zone.
The 2022 Butkus Award winner and consensus All-American would be available this late in the draft due to some team's concerns about his lack of athleticism and size. In a world where linebackers are increasingly getting smaller and faster, Campbell is more of a throwback to the early 2000s linebacker. Now that doesn't mean he can't play at an NFL level, as his most elite trait is his ability to process a play and his play speed is way different than what we saw at the combine, where he ran a 4.65-second 40-yard dash.
With that being said, if Campbell is available at the top of the third round, I think the Texans would be all over drafting him. You can pair him and Harris for the next four years to man that defense.