It's time. Since the Texans came into the league in 2002, their fans have been waiting for a team with an explosive offense and competitive defense. It's time. Mario Williams will make everyone forget about Reggie Bush and Vince Young next season, if he already hasn't. It's time. Andre Johnson and Matt Schuab (if healthy) will gain more national recognition as one of the most deadly duos in the NFL. It's time. I am predicting the Houston Texans to clinch a wild card and make the 2009 NFL Playoffs, and a great draft could help them win an extra game or two this year. It is the Texans' season - now or never.
On to their Draft range with the 15th overall pick:
Knowshon Moreno or Jeremy Maclin: Texans beat writer John McClain remains convinced defense will be the pick. I can't argue his track record, but Moreno and Maclin could do so much for this offense. They are sleepers I don't feel like we can count out quite so quickly.
Clay Matthews: I am just not buying it anymore. With an outside linebacking rotation of Zac Diles (SAM), Xavier Adibi (WILL), and Cato June (WILL), I don't think Houston is hard pressed to address linebacker anymore.
Cornerback: Dunta Robinson has been franchised and there are a few talented players on this roster in Antwaun Molden, Jacques Reeves, and Fred Bennett. I just don't see Houston going corner here with Vontae Davis or Darius Butler.
B.J. Raji: With the recent signing of Tank Johnson, Cincinnati will now pass on B.J. Raji. This means the only teams seriously considering Raji at this point would have to be Jacksonville, Buffalo, and Denver, based on my data. Raji next to Mario Williams and Amobi Okoye - I fear for Peyton Manning's life.
Malcolm Jenkins: If Jenkins is on the board, the Texans might love to add him to their defense as a free safety where they have a huge need.
I think of everyone here, Raji and Jenkins are the most likely candidates if they fall to this pick. If not, then look out for Moreno or Maclin.
Houston needs a bigger back next to Steve Slaton and if Gary Kubiak opts not to select Knowshon Moreno in the first round, then I think Rashad Jennings and Andre Brown are second-to-third round possibilities.
Kevin Walter is a solid receiver, but let's not get carried away here. Juaquin Iglesias and Hakeem Nicks have more upside as No. 2 receivers opposite Johnson and might get serious consideration in the second round.
Safety is the biggest need on this team. I can't even point out one safety. Every safety will be considered in the second to fourth rounds. Pathetic? I think so, but Nick Ferguson, Dominique Barber and Eugene Wilson are nothing to brag about.
Max Unger provides outstanding versatility for Houston in the second round because he can play all five positions in the zone blocking scheme if needed. Versatile interior offensive linemen might be looked at in the third and fourth rounds, including Jonathan Luigs and Antoine Caldwell. Tyrone Greene could be an immediate starter and can be had in the fourth or fifth rounds.