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NFL Draft: Houston Texans Have Two Choices?

Eenie meanie meinie mo...

87th Heisman Trophy Media Availability Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images

CBSSports ran an article yesterday based off an NFL Channel report detailing the current Houston Texans mindset on the #2 overall pick in this months draft.

Apparently, your Houston Texans have focused in solely on Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback Bryce Young and Ohio State Buckeyes’ C.J. Stroud. As if that’s a surprise to, well, anyone who has been paying attention.

James Palmer, (as quoted by CBSSports)

The Texans have the mindset right now of, ‘Let’s see who gets picked at number one, and we’ll take the other guy, because both of them [Bryce Young and C.J. Stroud] check a lot of boxes. You heard what [head coach] DeMeco Ryans said: It’s really down to the two of them, and they’re evaluating both of them. If you listen to any of the the decision-makers down there in Houston, they’ll tell you, ‘We’re not going to compare the two, but they both check a lot of the boxes that we want checked on the field and off the field.

NFL Draft: Houston Texans Have Two Choices?


Palmer noted that there are certain things Ryans looks for that Young and Stroud have that the other top quarterback prospects, Will Levis and Anthony Richardson, maybe don’t have. The first is experience, which Palmer said is “valued heavily” by Ryans and his coaching staff. Both Young and Stroud have played not only in a lot of games, but also in a lot of big, important ones.

Ryans also values leadership. He’s praised Young for having that trait publicly, and when the Texans met with Stroud, they talked about his competitiveness and desire to win, Palmer said.

Now, as with most things this close to the draft, some of the smoke leads to the fire of truth. And, some of it is meant to throw others off the trail.

If Houston general manager Nick Caserio is actually out to trade the #2 draft pick, his best bet is to communicate the value of the pick by building up both quarterbacks as franchise-changing playmakers.

Texans head coach DeMeco Ryans knows how that game is played as well. However, Ryans doesn’t exactly have a career full of disingenuous hyperbole. When he’s high on a player it shows.

DeMeco Ryans (as quoted by CBSSports)

“I know Bryce is an outstanding leader from what I’ve seen, and is an outstanding quarterback,” Ryans said March 28, via Houston’s 790 AM. “It’s no surprise the success that he’s had. Just because of the makeup, the type of guy that he is, it’s no surprise the success he’s had. Wishing him the best moving forward. Two good players, two good quality quarterbacks. We’ll see what happens in the draft.”

With a defensive minded coach, the appeal of Will Anderson Jr., Alabama EDGE game-wrecker, has to be a thing. Many also consider Anderson Jr. a sure-fire home run compared to Stroud and teammate Young.

The Negatives of C.J. Stroud and Bryce Young

Very rarely does a quarterback rise up in the pre-draft analysis without a defined list of negatives - as if everyone is looking to pre-validate the players eventual wash-out.

Stroud is often labeled as a guy who succeeded based on context of the surrounding roster and lack of NFL level opposition. Many scouts note his play doesn’t match his available athleticism and it will take a top notch quarterback coach and solid commitment from the player to ever come near his true potential. However, in the right situation, with the right mindset, Stroud has legit upside.

Young faces near constant criticism over his height and weight. Let’s face it, 5’10” 204 pounds isn’t exactly Peyton Manning or Patrick Mahomes size. Surround Young with a top tier offensive line, quality receivers and a yardage hungry run game and he very well might be the next Drew Brees. Put him behind a line that’s an afterthought, with middling receivers and the Bill O’Brien version of the Texans’ run game and the kid will likely exit the NFL far too soon.

Too bad whomever the Texans take with the #2 pick won’t have the GOAT to play pitch and catch with:

April 27th can’t get here fast enough...