After analyzing the draft needs of all 32 teams, PFT will review how well each team addressed those needs. Up next: The Houston Texans.
What they needed: Wide receiver, outside linebacker, guard, nose tackle, tight end.
Who they got:
Round 1: DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson
Round 2: D.J. Swearinger, SS, South Carolina
Round 3: Brennan Williams, OT, North Carolina
Round 3: Sam Montgomery, DE, Louisiana State
Round 4: Trevardo Williams, DE, Connecticut
Round 6: David Quessenberry, OT, San Jose State
Round 6: Alan Bonner, WR, Jacksonville State
Round 6: Chris Jones, DT, Bowling Green
Round 6: Ryan Griffin, TE, Connecticut
Where they hit: Hopkins overcame the pre-draft smear campaign, and might be the kind of big-play threat they’ve lacked at receiver (other than that Andre Johnson guy, of course). They also added some good offensive line depth in Williams and Quessenberry, guys who should be in the mix this year and could start down the line.
Where they missed: Some more pass rush help would have been nice, and while Williams has promise, there are a lot of folks in the scouting community who think Montgomery’s a waste of time. The talent is there, but that’s not the problem for him. Landing on a good team might create the atmosphere he needs, but the Texans can’t count on him in the short term. The good news is they don’t have to.
Impact rookies: Swearinger will make an impact on opponents, mostly. One of the true hitters in this class, he’s an enforcer in the back of the defense, the kind of guy Ed Reed would have loved lining up next to in Baltimore. He should be a huge benefit on special teams, as he has explosive ability and doesn’t mind dropping a shoulder into someone.
Long-term prospects: Even if Hopkins is the only rookie that contributes, that’s OK for the Texans, who didn’t enter the offseason with many holes to fill. But they need Hopkins to contribute quickly. Reed’s signing was symbolic as much as tangible, as they’re hoping some of his Ravens mojo rubs off on a team with talent, which has disappointed in the postseason. They drafted a few guys who could become the next wave of replacements for departed veterans, but this is clearly a team that sees the window closing, if not this year then soon.