I thought it was pretty odd when Johnny Manziel said that he wasn’t going to be at the Texas A&M Pro Day. Then it dawned on me. The draft is about who can create the most hype and stand out the most before stepping foot in Radio City Music Hall.
We’ve seen Manziel’s draft stock slowly fall, during and after the NFL Combine. Manziel can thank Jadeveon Clowney for that. Clowney basically pulled the Anchorman mirror scene. You know what scene I’m talking about… Ron Burgandy looks in the mirror and says to himself, “Mmmmm…. I look good. I mean really good.” Then yells, “HEY EVERYONE! COME SEE HOW GOOD I LOOK!”
Since then, there’s been a lot of chatter surrounding the Houston Texans not even drafting a quarterback with the first pick. How much chatter? Well, Bill O’Brien met with Jimmy Garoppolo. Garoppolo isn’t a first rounder. So that raises a few eyebrows.
Let’s move on to Texas A&M’s Pro Day and see what’s being thrown around in the land of Twitter.
@StevePalazzolo Safer meaning worth top-10 pick? Clowney. Safer meaning NFL starter long-term? Probably Mathews.
— Eric Galko (@OptimumScouting) March 5, 2014
Evans and Manziel will not do any drills nor talk. Matthews will do position drills. A pretty lame pro day
— Aggie Sports (@Aggie_Sports) March 5, 2014
Jake Matthews just met with Rams for awhile. Said he did board work and film work.
— Charean Williams (@NFLCharean) March 5, 2014
Listening to Jake, Kevin and Mike Matthews its obvious how much they respect their famous father, who made 14 consecutive Pro Bowls.
— John McClain (@McClain_on_NFL) March 5, 2014
No surprise that the A&M Pro Day was going to be lame. No Manziel, no Mike Evans, and Jake Matthews is only doing position drills. That’s about as lame as it gets.
Why is this worth mentioning? If Rick Smith and Bill O’Brien aren’t sold on Clowney’s work ethic and on any of the quarterbacks, they might trade back to get another get another pick. Jake Matthews might be the next best option in the Top 5.
If the Texans draft a quarterback in the second round he’s going to need protection.
“Q: Give your assessment of the Texans need list. It may be longer than some outsiders think.
A: The needs as I see them…in no particular order
3. Slot WR is going to be important in this offense
5. DE if Antonio Smith departs
6. OLB/ILB – tied together in some sense
7. Safety…especially so now that Ed Reed is gone…oh wait
8. And if J Jo has to be a cap casualty, then CB is a need as well as nickel CB
…oh and I didn’t even mention QB.
The question to me is whether there are any candidates on the roster that can step into those gaps under the tutelage of a new staff, new scheme and new vibe. Can Brennan Williams and/or David Quessenberry take both or at least one of the two open OL jobs? Can Brooks Reed move to ILB for good? Can Antonio Smith be brought back? Which players are cap casualties? Is Keshawn Martin a true slot receiving option? So, if there are roster options to fill some of those needs, just how many actually do?”
I recommend reading the entire piece Stradley did with Harris. It’s very informative. It may also open your eyes, when you see how many holes the Texans need to fill.
The Texans drafting Matthews is a reach, but at this point almost anything is possible. There’s too many holes, it’s hard to even know where to begin.
For more on how Rick Smith has drafted see: Houston Texans: Cap and Draft By The Numbers