Now I know people have kinda got after me the last couple of years when I do mock drafts for sticking to my guns with certain prospects. With that in mind, I'm doing something different. I'm not changing my stance on positions, but I am looking at alternative options just in case my pick isn't there. With that being said, here we go......
1st - ILB Arthur Brown, KSU
I think he is the perfect complient to Cushing. He has the speed to chase down RBs, TEs, & mobile QBs, not to mention he plays much larger than his size would lead you to believe he would. As for the recent story saying Reed is moving to ILB, part of me believes that is a smoke screen. This draft is much deeper at ILB than it is at 3-4 OLBs, especially early on. The top level pass rushers will all be gone before the Texans pick, so I think ILB is the route to go.
Alternatives: Kevin Minter, Khaseem Greene, Alec Ogletree (long shot due to character issues)
2nd - OT Kyle Long, Oregon
Think he would be a nice fit on the offensive line to take over the RT spot. Has the athleitcism & mobility Kubiak likes on the offensive line, yet has room to improve on his technique. He would be a much better option than what the Texans have now in Newton, Harris, & Butler.
Alternatives - Reid Fragel, Luke Marquardt
3rd - NT Brandon Williams, Missouri Southern
Time to satisfy everyone's NT lust. This guy really made some heads turn at the Senior Bowl, especially when he came in weighing 341 pounds. If we get someone like Brown, Greene, Ogletree, or Minter, we'll need that big body up front to keep blockers away from the ILBs, not to mention to draw a double team away from J.J. Watt.
Alternative - Sylvester Williams
3rd comp - ILB/OLB Jon Major, Colorado
I'm sure we've all seen his scouting footage by now. Everything he does just screams what we need in a LB for the Texans. His versatility will also make him highly desirable as he played all 3 LB positions (Mike, Will, & Sam) at Colorado, so it stands to reason he could be effective at the Mo as well. However, whoever we draft in the 1st will likely be playing the Mo, so why draft Major?? One word, Depth. If either Cushing or the Mo LB gets hurt, we'll need someone to step in just in case. Basically I'm doing the same thing that the Redskins did in drafting Kirk Cousins after drafting RG3. Also since Major can play OLB as well, he can be a rotational player with Reed & Mercilus (mostly Mercilus)
Alternative - None, Draft This Man At All Costs
4th - TE Travis Kelce, Cincy
Basically what I see in him is what we see in Kevin Walter, just in a much larger body. I think Kevin Walter is getting cut & we'll need someone that can replicate what he brings. He seals the edge very well on run plays & is a very nice pass blocker, which both Schaub & Foster would greatly appreciate. He's got nice soft hands & catches the ball very well. Also at 6'6", he'll be that large red zone target we were missing when Joel Dreesen left.
Alternatives - Joseph Fauria, Levine Toilolo
5th - WR Marquise Goodwin, Texas
Now it's obvious speed is his game, however the question is could he be a reliable slot receiver. That being said, I don't see him being used going over the middle on short routes very much. I see him as more as a poor man's Mike Wallace, as someone whose main job is to be a deep threat & possible return man. He's gonna get behind secondaries if he's used right. He's also used often in WR screens, which is something the Texans have used in the past. If he's on the board this late, it's worth taking a shot on him
Alternative - Denard Robinson
5th comp - FS Ray Ray Armstrong, Miami
This man could be a sleeper. He has 1st round talent written all over him. At 6'4", 218 lbs, he's got the size to cover the big TEs in the NFL, & has pretty good speed. The only reason he's gonna be on the board this late is because he was declared ineligible after getting busted in the illegal benefits scandal at Miami, so he's been out of football all season long (same as Posey last season). He'll be a risky pick like Posey was (he's gonna tear it up at the combine for sure though), but with a 5th round compensatory pick, he's well worth the gamble & risk.
Alternatives - Cooper Taylor, T.J. McDonald
6th - OG Earl Watford, James Madison
He is the athletic, small school, late round type of linemen that Kubiak tends to find. At 6'4" 290 lbs, he still has room to put on some bulk. He's the kind of guy Kubiak could develop to be a quality backup lineman
7th - RB Theo Riddick, ND
He is the versatile change of pace back that the Texans need. He spent time at slot WR due to Notre Dame's lack of WR depth when Brady Hoke took over, so he has good hands. He's the kind of guy that can be a receiving threat out of the backfield with good speed
7th comp - CB/S Melvin White, ULL
White is the protoypical secondary tweener. He might not have the speed to play CB, but at 6'3" 191 lbs, he has the size to play safety. He could put on some weight to help in that transistion since one of the knocks on him is his lean build, but at the end of the draft, you can gamble on a guy like him.
So let me know what you think......