Prior to last month’s NFL Draft, your Houston Texans were a top 32 team in the NFL according to ESPN’s power rankings. That’s right, one slot lower for Caserio & crew and the Georgia Bulldogs or Houston Roughnecks might have been higher.
However, after what most have deemed a very successful draft orchestrated by Nick and head coach Lovie Smith, the H-Town boys have climbed four spots to #28.
It almost feels weird to have hope for the future of H-Town pro football again, but here we are, killin’ it.
A lot of it has to do with #3 overall pick Derek Stingley Jr. and #37 overall pick Jalen Pitre. The Texans had a league worst secondary last year, but adding a corner who could potentially be the best player in this draft class, along with an intriguing, versatile safety who never gave up a touchdown from the secondary in college should do a lot to elevate Smith’s defensive efforts.
Over at ESPN, soon to be ex-Texans correspondent Sarah Barshop thinks the additions on offense have done more to improve the team’s fortunes:
28. Houston Texans
Post-free agency ranking: 32
Player who benefited most from draft: QB Davis Mills
Yes, the Texans used their top draft pick on a defensive player, but they certainly upgraded around Mills on the offensive side of the ball as well. Houston’s second second-round pick was guard Kenyon Green, who should slide right into the Texans’ starting lineup. The Texans also added wide receiver John Metchie III on Day 2 and running back Dameon Pierce on Day 3. Houston is slowly improving an offense that ranked 30th in Football Outsiders’ DVOA. Mills might not be the Texans’ long-term answer at quarterback, but general manager Nick Caserio is certainly setting him up for more success in 2022.
While I think she meant “second first-round pick Kenyon Green” we all get the gist.
Now-retired-but-still-active Houston Chronicle reporter John McClain was at Texans practice the other day and while he didn’t mention Green, he did offer some good news for another former first round Texans offensive lineman.
Reporters saw the starters on the right side of the O line: Tackle Tytus Howard and G AJ Cann, who played for new coach George Warhop at Jacksonville. It's good that Warhop has Howard back at tackle where he belongs. No more experimenting with him at guard.— John McClain (@McClain_on_NFL) May 24, 2022
George Warhop hasn’t exactly had a career littered with success, but at least he seems smart enough to put a tackle at the tackle spot... #winning.
Now, hopefully the Texans don’t improve too much, and the Cleveland Browns decline, so the 2023 draft haul can include a name like C.J. Stroud or, if Davis Mills takes. big step forward, Will Anderson. With solid development from the current roster, hopefuly Houston can leverage this year’s crop with next year’s to catapult back to the top ten.