The Houston Texans will need to keep as many draft picks as possible

The Houston Texans should be active in the trade market but only to such a degree
2022 NFL Draft - Round 1
2022 NFL Draft - Round 1 / Kevin Sabitus/GettyImages

The Houston Texans are in a situation where they may be able to expedite their rebuild even more than their 10-7 season previously did. The arrival of C.J. Stroud and Will Anderson lifted the expectations from a losing season and a high-draft pick to an AFC South title and a playoff win over a tough challenger in the Cleveland Browns.

They're primed to make some major free-agent acquisitions this season, and the trade market keeps mentioning the Texans as landing spots for anyone and everyone. One team that we already mentioned involved the San Francisco 49ers, who may end up trading one of their star receivers in Brandon Aiyuk.

He's a stellar talent but he's going to cost a pretty penny, and it's a penny the Texans don't need to part ways with. While upgrades to the defense, offensive line, and running back are crucial, the Texans have two developing studs already at receiver in Nico Collins and Tank Dell. The team doesn't need Aiyuk they may need someone like Saquon Barkley or Khalil Mack.

So it's important to ask yourself how much it would cost to acquire Aiyuk because while the Texans and the NFL are swimming in money right now, the odds are in three or four years, the Texans will have to give Stroud and a few other guys massive contracts, making it unlikely the team can continue to do big business in free agency. They'll have to rely on the NFL Draft more than ever if they hope to continue their success. The success we're presuming they'll end up having.

It may seem like a minor gripe to part with two first-round picks in 2024 when that's 2027's problem, but the fact is you can never assume that a pick will transfer into production. The Texans are going to need as many draft picks between now and the end of these rookie contracts in order to replace guys they end up not being able to afford.

And if Aiyuk is one of those names the team acquires and ends up not being able to afford in a few seasons, then what's the point of the trade?