The Houston Texans shouldn't have traded away their first round draft pick

So, that happened.

2023 NFL Draft - Rounds 2-3
2023 NFL Draft - Rounds 2-3 / Kevin Sabitus/GettyImages

The Houston Texans made a move on Friday to trade away their first-round draft pick, which fell at No. 23 for two second-round picks. The deal was made with the Minnesota Vikings who sent the Texans two seconds, one in 2024 (pick 42), as well as a second-round pick in 2025, and a sixth-round pick in 2024 (188th). The Vikings also got a seventh-round pick (232nd) from the Texans for 2024.

The move isn't the worst in the world, as the Texans only drop 19 spots while getting a second-round pick next year as well, and that's what many are talking about. It's a thought process that seems to suggest that two second-round picks are better than one first-round pick. That's certainly not the worst idea possible, but it has to be said that the quality of players does drop dramatically as time goes on.

The NFL seems to agree, as many think the Vikings acquired a second-round pick to move up in the draft to be able to select a quarterback. Why not just the second-round pick from 2024, and save yourself losing a 2025 pick in return? Because NFL teams know that first-round picks have more value than any other in the draft. So getting rid of yours isn't the best move.

And it needs to be emphasized, that while the Texans only dropped back 19 spots, they're now not picking until the 42nd pick. That means that the 41 best players are going to be off the board before you ever pick. Yes, you need depth, and yes you need to fill multiple gaps, but this trade doesn't help them this year, in fact, it hurts them this year.

The odds that the Texans get a Pro Bowl, or even a starting-level talent drop from round to round. If we look at the 2020 NFL Draft, we see that nine Pro Bowlers went in the first round, and another 10 went throughout the draft. None were taken later than the fourth round. Yes, you can still find top-tier talent in the second round, and beyond for that matter, but it becomes harder and harder to do so with each pick passing you buy. There is a dramatic drop of 42 picks in the draft, and sometimes, like in 2020, you can find top guys.

Yet, in other years, not nearly as much if anything. Now, this trade wouldn't be so bad if the Texans landed better names in free agency, especially at the cornerback and safety positions, but so far those spots have really gone untended. The Texans can find several starters in the second round this year but why make it harder on yourselves than it needs to be?

The hope is that the Texans can in fact land some starters for this season in the second-round, but we'll have to see what happens next.