The Texans may have just drafted what they hope to be their franchise QB of the future, but ESPN is less than optimistic of the Texans’ future regardless of this addition. ESPN has assembled a cabal of their most astute analysts to break down the current state of all 32 franchises and rank their future standing in regards to Roster, QB, Coaching, Front Office, and Draft. From this, they have created a composite score for each individual team.
The Texans’ score had them rated a lowly 23rd amongst all teams. Why so low, you ask. I’ll let Mike Sando, Field Yates and Louis Riddick explain the decision,
Why they're here: This is lower than many would expect the Texans to be ranked, given they have won consecutive division titles and finished first in yards per game allowed last season despite missing J.J. Watt for most of the season. But the ranking will pivot based on Deshaun Watson's progression. If he's a home run pick, Houston will contend in the AFC. This much is certain: After already trading away both its first- and second-round picks in 2018, the Texans need Watson to be their answer at quarterback. -- Field Yates
Biggest worry: When you move up in the draft to select a QB, you better be right. The Texans' regime hasn't had the best luck at identifying/developing a franchise QB. Brock Osweiler, Brandon Weeden, Brian Hoyer, Ryan Mallett and Ryan Fitzpatrick all turned out to be backups/marginal starters. Watson's development (or lack thereof) will determine how Bill O'Brien is remembered in Houston when his time is up. Count on it. -- Louis Riddick
What could change for the better: Houston ranks only 24th in quarterback outlook, quite a bit lower than teams such as Kansas City (13th) and the Chargers (15th). Why? There's a realistic chance that Watson will be as good or better than Patrick Mahomes II or whoever might be behind center for the Chiefs three years from now. -- Mike Sando
As you can see, ESPN’s evaluation hinges quite a bit on the performance of Deshaun Watson and whether or not he can become the Texans’ first choice at a position that is currently manned by someone other than him. You should check out the rest of the rankings and see what other teams are ranked above and around the Texans.
What do you say, Texans fans? Is ESPN underrating the Texans’ future? Are they right on the money with their prediction?