AFC South reporter
INDIANAPOLIS – Houston Texans general manager Nick Caserio didn’t feed the media beast during his NFL Scouting Combine press conference on Tuesday.
There were no juicy quotes, no mind-blowing revelations about what Houston might do with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. In many ways, what he offered was a word salad: hypotheticals of what might happen. with teams in the draft and free agency, and the factors driving those outcomes.
Inside him, however, was a vision of how the Texans could approach their top pick, one of the most consequential in the draft.
Here are a couple of predictions for Houston based on his comments:
Jeans will model eagles‘ Jalen hurts blueprint for QB success
Asked about the quarterbacks in this year’s draft, Caserio noted that the Eagles are a good example of a franchise that focuses on the qualities it values most at signal-callers and builds the team from there.
He noted how Philadelphia built its entire offense around what Hurts did well, using RPO and his legs. Hurts became a Pro Bowler last season, finished second in MVP voting to Patrick Mahomes and guided his team to a Super Bowl appearance.
So that could be how the Texans approach their offense this spring: building around the quarterback’s skill set. Houston is expected to select its future hopeful with the No. 2 pick, which could be Alabama’s Bryce Young or Ohio State’s CJ Stroud, after Davis Mills’ struggles last season.
New coach DeMeco Ryans said in his introductory press conference earlier this month that he wants a run-first offense that is also balanced. This vision assumes being married to the quarterback’s strengths.
“Really, what you want to do with every player on your team is, ‘What do they do well? What are the things that we can give them to do well and give them the best chance?’ So that’s really the focus,” Caserio said. “It’s not one size fits all. So you have to figure out what you value and what’s most important and then build your team around that. And then give that player a chance to go out there and perform. Don’t ask him let him do it. something that, frankly, he doesn’t do well.”
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Houston will be second overall
Caserio said generally speaking, teams probably have three or four players they feel comfortable selecting when they’re on the clock in the draft. So if the team ahead of you takes one of those guys, in theory, that team should still have two or three guys they really like.
The Texans general manager did acknowledge the obvious: that teams aren’t always comfortable with the group of players they can front and try to move up as a result. But with Houston holding the second overall pick in the draft, there’s a good chance the team is happy with the prospects still on the board.
There has been speculation that Houston could try to move up to No. 1, securing the first quarterback pick. But to do that, the Texans would likely have to give up the second and 12th picks (acquired from the Browns in the Deshaun Watson trade last spring) as part of a package. Would it be worth it when they already have a good position in the draft?
“I think we’re focused on the jeans,” Caserio said. “We’re not necessarily worried about what the teams around us are doing. I mean, you know, but at the end of the day, you’ve got to be ready to pick wherever you want and then be ready to pick whatever. player… You just try to make decisions that are in the best interest of your team and your situation.”
Ben Arthur is the AFC South reporter for FOX Sports. He previously worked for The Tennessean/USA TODAY Network, where he was the Titans beat writer for a year and a half. He covered the Seattle Seahawks for SeattlePI.com for three seasons (2018-20) before moving to Tennessee. You can follow Ben on Twitter at @benyarthur.
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