Now that the 2011 NFL Scouting Combine is in the books, draftniks will be coming out of the woodwork to tell you who will be drafted and where. People often complain about mock drafts, but I think they're great. While I don't put a lot of stock into them until about mid-April, and that's only with a certain few writers, I think they have their place right now as well. First of all, they're fun. Everyone likes to play general manager and talk about who would be good for what team and why. Besides, the only other option right now is to talk about labor uncertainty, of which there is no news. Yay.
The other reason is there is value in learning by compilation. I'm not saying that if you average all mock drafts you see that you will be able to read the tea leaves and tell how the draft will go. I mean that the more you get an idea about who will go in the first round, the more you can estimate who will be around for your second and third round picks, which are the picks that are the most important in my opinion. Let's see what everyone thinks about your Houston Texans after the jump.
First of all, I apologize for not giving you your daily dose of links yesterday. Some of these are from over the weekend, so if you've already seen them, read on.
John McClain posted his first mock draft, in which he has the Texans taking Robert Quinn. This is becoming a more and more popular pick amongst mock drafters, like in this one by Evan Silva. McClain is, to my knowledge, the first local guy that has slated the suspended North Carolina outside linebacker conversion prospect at 11.
Alan Burge continued his draft watch series on the aforementioned Quinn, in which he does a great job detailing the two red flags on Quinn--a brain tumor that he still has, and getting suspended for his entire junior season. I have a piece upcoming with more detail on Quinn myself, but I will state that he is incredibly intriguing and worrisome all at once.
The other popular pick is Cal defensive lineman Cameron Jordan, who was selected by Brian Galliford in SB Nation's mock draft. Jordan doesn't seem to be a popular pick amongst Texans fans whose reactions I've seen, but I don't think they realize what Jordan could bring to the table as a five technique in Wade Phillips' 3-4. Jordan will also be in my later post which will hopefully be up tonight or tomorrow.
Jordan and Quinn are both number one in their respective position rankings as written by Lance Zierlein. In all fairness though, Lance has Quinn slated as a 4-3 DE, and he isn't the first person to suggest that he would be better at that position than at 3-4 outside linebacker. I'm sure Quinn would play more in the role of DeMarcus Ware for the Texans, which would mean not too much dropping in coverage.
With the switch to Wade's defense, the Texans have already announced that Brian Cushing will be moving inside with (a hopefully healthy) DeMeco Ryans. Barrett Walton discussed what that move will be like for the former Defensive Rookie of the Year.
Jerome Solomon has an idea of how the switch to the 3-4 could go smoothly in the case of a lockout. He's also getting a tad on the whiny side for my taste, with the "a smart organization would..." talk. I'm all about calling the team out when warranted, but to suggest a radical strategy that has never been attempted by any of the 32 teams and insinuate the team is not a smart organization because it won't be the first to do so is a little petty.
Stephanie Stradley discussed the possible lockout and why it would be particularly bad for the City of Houston in general.
Diehard Chris wrote his latest installment in his free agent focus series, with this one on Ravens cornerback Chris Carr. He teased it on Twitter by saying that most of us wouldn't be fans of his latest potential signee. In the case of me, he was right.
For those of you that missed it by the way, Chris Watkins (a/k/a Diehard Chris) is the new weekend editor at SB Nation Houston. For a breakdown of his extensive work from his first weekend on the job, check it out here.