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Figuring Out Nick Martin: Answers From A Notre Dame Fan

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Was the center worth the 50th overall pick?

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Eric Murtaugh of One Foot Down has already given his thoughts on the Texans’ selection of Will Fuller, and now he’s back to giveus a Notre Dame fan’s perspective on Houston’s newest center.

1. Nick Martin has been widely praised for his leadership in the Notre Dame locker room. Do any particular stories come to mind when you think of him off the field?

Nothing specific, but he's been running things on the offensive line, and more importantly, making life easier for four different quarterbacks over the last three years. He learned a lot from his older brother, Cowboys guard Zack Martin, and then carried the torch as a major leader of the Notre Dame program once Zack was drafted into the NFL.

2. What is Martin's biggest strength?

His understanding of protections and overall smarts as an offensive lineman. By far, that's his biggest strength.

3. What about his biggest weakness?

He could be more physical. He dealt with a lot of nagging injuries throughout his career and at times he just didn't look like the physicality was matching all the praise he received as an important part of the Notre Dame offense.

4. After Martin tore his ACL as a sophomore, several scouts noted that his movement skills seemed to decline a bit. Would you say that is accurate, and if so did it affect his level of play at all?

I don't think it was an issue; maybe very early when he came back, but not for long after that. Being able to move and being athletic has always been one of his greatest strengths. Like I said, I would worry more about the physicality of the NFL and not his ability to move.

5. What are your long-term expectations for Martin as a pro? Would you have taken him 50th overall if given the opportunity?

I can't really speak to Houston's needs, but if you were seeking a center, the 50th spot feels a little high (but not by too much). I'd bet Martin has a nice career. One thing to watch is that he could really take another step or two above his current level once he's focusing on football 24/7. This happens quite often with Notre Dame players who are so bogged down with non-football activities while in school.

Once again, thank you to Eric for stopping by and giving his thoughts on this Texans rookie class. For all things Notre Dame, including next year’s crop of Irish draft hopefuls, you can head on over to One Foot Down.