Grading The Houston Texans' 2012 Draft Class: Sort Of, But Not Really

If Wade's smiling, I'm smiling.

Today marks an annual rite of spring--the award of grades to teams for their haul from the NFL Draft. By its very nature, it's ridiculous. We have no idea how any of the players drafted from Thursday to Saturday are going to fare on the next level. They haven't even played a snap as professional football players.

Thus, two years ago, I coined a term/grading rubric entitled "PSGWITTIHIFATPITY." That stands for "PURELY SPECULATIVE GRADE WHERE I TRY TO IMAGINE HOW I'LL FEEL ABOUT THIS PICK IN THREE (3) YEARS." Because I am nothing if not drained from the weekend and completely incapable of being original at the moment, I am going back to the well that I initially poisoned. A somewhat detailed reaction to each Texans' 2012 draft pick, along with a few other miscellaneous grades, occurs after the jump.

Vega, Uprooted Texan, TexansDC, and MDC: The first three gentlemen on that list completely and totally carried BRB's coverage of Rounds Two through Seven of the 2012 NFL Draft, and MDC helped TDC and I on Thursday night. From their analysis to their willingness to monitor and contribute to the open threads as the draft progressed, there are no words to thank them for what they did. The NFL Draft is a lot of fun. Writing about it for hours on end, tethered to your laptop, is not. I cannot thank them enough for what they did and continue to do every day here at BRB. If you like BRB, you like it because of the work those guys do. They are the best around. GRADE: A+++.

The BRB Community: Know why monitoring the NFL Draft here is such a grind? Because of the THOUSANDS of comments all of you care enough to make. I've said it many times, and I'll continue to say it: BRB is as good as it is because of everyone who takes the time to comment and/or read. Without you taking the time to share your thoughts, we'd all be less inclined to share ours. Thank you all very much. GRADE: A+.

Yours Truly: Two years ago, in the piece linked above, I decided that we would give the Kareem Jackson pick an "A" in three years, writing gems like "I find myself positively giddy about K-Jack's future as a Texan" and "we'll all be crowing about his game sooner rather than later." While there is still technically a year left for my projection and those assertions to become accurate, early returns are, to say the least, not promising. Sometimes, I should probably just keep my opinions to myself. GRADE: F (almost assuredly to be lowered to an "F-" at the end of the 2012 season).

Whitney Mercilus: I preferred Nick Perry here, but I think we all know that I have no clue what I'm talking about. If Wade liked Mercilus more than Perry, that's more than good enough for me. PSGWITTIHIFATPITY: A-.

BRBAPALOOZA: Wonderful on so many levels, and it's getting a separate post later today. In short, BRB is home to some of the most unbelievable and generous people anywhere, and it is a huge honor to be associated with many of you. GRADE: A++++++++++.

DeVier Posey: Easily the pick I'm the most skeptical about. With the other WRs available on the board, I am still having a hard time wrapping my mind around taking Posey in the third round, which probably means he'll be an All-Pro who cures the common cold while ministering to the lepers in Kuala Lumpur during the 2014 offseason. PSGWITTIHIFATPITY: C+.

Brandon Brooks: My initial reaction was, "Huh?". The more I read about Brooks after the pick, however, the more I started digging it. He's a big, nimble guy who should come in to immediately compete with Antoine Calwell at RG, and there's an outside chance he could play tackle. The Texans needed to address the offensive line, and (Jon Gruden voice) THIS GUY looks like he could be a solid fit. PSGWITTIHIFATPITY: B.

Ben Jones: Loved that the Texans addressed the need for depth at center. Found it odd that they went with Jones over some of the other guys who were still on the board. Realized that the fact they took Jones when they did, with who else was still available, meant they probably had him as the second or third best center in the draft for their scheme. Then I read this, fell in love with the picture of Jones eating turf, and have decided this selection is bound for excellence. I'm all in on Ben Jones, and I think he's the successor to Chris Myers in two to four years. PSGWITTIHIFATPITY: A.

Keshawn Martin: Again, I found the pick rather odd, considering the other options still on the board. BFD exponentially increased my concern by showing me this profile of Martin; note the part about uninspired blocking and being unreliable in traffic. I think Martin can work in Kubes' offense as a slot receiver, and I'm guessing the Texans saw Martin as a poor man's Kendall Wright. I do not see him as a WR2, even down the road, but he could be a solid WR3 who handles returns. Which means he could replace Jacoby Jones quickly. Which means I can't be too upset by the idea of Keshawn Martin, Houston Texan. PSGWITTIHIFATPITY: B-.

Jared Crick: Immediately prior to this selection, I was mumbling, "Crick, Crick, Crick, Crick...please take Crick." Then the Texans took him, and I reacted by yelling "BOOM!" and aggressively pumping my fist. Like nearly every other Texans fan, I love this pick. Crick will come in, fight for snaps, and seems likely to start making his way into the rotation at DE. If things work out, he'll succeed Antonio Smith in two to three years. I believe things will in fact work out which, given my past draft analysis, almost ensures that they will not and Crick will be out of the league in three years. Screw it. I still love this Cripick. PSGWITTIHIFATPITY: A+.

Randy Bullock: Still on a high after the Crick selection, I was brought back to earth when the Texans drafted Randy Bullock in the fifth round. Alma mater bias aside, my initial reaction to this choice was negative. Not because I don't think Bullock can be a good NFL kicker, but because I thought it was asinine to draft a kicker in the fifth when there was still a handful of draftable kickers left and, more importantly, other intriguing non-kicker options. It's not like there was going to be run on kickers before the Texans went on the clock in the sixth round. Guess what? There was a run on kickers before the Texans went on the clock in the sixth round. Seems to me that Smithiak may have foreseen what was about to happen, and they made sure to draft the best kicker on their board so they wouldn't be forced to recycle a veteran or sign an undrafted free agent they weren't excited about. To that end, they got their guy, and I can't find much fault in that, even if the fifth round initially struck me as too high for a kicker. PSGWITTIHIFATPITY: B.

Nick Mondek: Project. The idea that he could perhaps one day play on the defensive line is interesting, especially since it appears he has a way to go as an offensive lineman. Quite possibly a practice squad stash, which ain't a bad thing for a large human being who was your sixth round draft pick, especially when you're looking to build depth on the lines. PSGWITTIHIFATPITY: C.

Texans' UDFAs: Dwight Jones is certainly the most interesting of the group, purely because he was at one time thought to have first or second round talent. He is not, despite his own assessment, Andre Johnson. The good news for him is that Houston does present an opportunity for him to make the 53-man roster. He's talented enough, I think, to make this team as a fifth wideout; time will tell if he earns that spot. The others (yes, even the nose tackle) are the longest of shots to make the team, though one or two of 'em could latch on to the practice squad. PSGWITTIHIFATPITY: B+ (only because D. Jones has the potential to be a home run if Kubes can get through to him).

I've already said way too much, and I'm eager to learn your thoughts. What do you think of the Texans' 2012 draft class?

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