Staying with the draft theme temporarily, Rick Gosselin, who is considered one of the premier written journalists on the draft, published his grades for the classes selected over the weekend. I’ve gone on record several times that giving grades immediately after the draft is terrible because no one has any idea how players will actually perform in the NFL. Having said that though, I’m a whore for good press and Gosselin gave the Texans an A+. Ehhh. Who are we without integrity?
As a couple of people have noted, the Texans’ selection of Brian Cushing and Connor Barwin on Day One of the Draft might seem to lend credence to the notion that the defense may be switching to a 3-4 in some way shape or form. This was actually my initial thought immediately after the Barwin pick because so many had projected him as a 3-4 rush OLB. After thinking about it though, I don’t think this will happen. As Matt noted in a uh…passionate argument against the switch, Mario Williams is one of the, if not the, best 4-3 DE in all of football, and relying on Travis Johnson to play NT is probably just as smart as being sexually attracted to a wood chipper. I think that Barwin will eventually be developed to stand up but this will be just a misdirection tool. If he was able to get to a point that he could cover a TE or RB, then offenses would never know if he was dropping into coverage and/or whether one of the LBs were blitzing, or if Barwin was using his speed to rush the passer. While Barwin developing LB skills would be great, I don’t think it means switching to a 3-4.
I was just as pissed as everyone else that we didn’t sign a bigger RB during the draft, but then my brother reminded me of something that someone brought up on BRB a couple of weeks ago. Denver is no longer running a one-cut zone running scheme and have now brought in several RB’s that don’t fit that system and drafted one in the first round. The Texans are likely trying to wait until the Broncos start jettisoning the old RBs they no longer need so that Smithiak can pick up some zone experienced backs on the cheap. How awesome would it be to see Ryan Torain in the backfield when Steve Slaton comes out? The answer is very.
Dunta has officially forced me out of his corner. Who would have ever thought that making almost $10 million dollars after what some had considered a career-ending injury would be a bad thing? The latest Dunta demand is that the Texans agree to not use the franchise tag on him again next year or he will not report for offseason workouts, possibly training camp, and may even hold out. Maybe I’m being picky, but I would think he should be more worried about playing well enough to even warrant a franchise tag next year. If he snaps out of this and plays well this year, I’m not saying that I’ll never support him again, but right now he has officially pissed me off.