NFL Hot Press: Mike Martin Deserving of Promotion in Houston

Mike Martin Deserving of Promotion in Houston

Updated Jan. 20, 2015
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.

One of the most improved teams in the NFL this past season was the Houston Texans. Their seven-win improvement was a team effort with huge contributions coming from the scouting staff as well as the new coaches. One of the assets in the Texans turnaround was a strong front office and scouting staff led by general manager Rick Smith.

Houston’s director of college scouting, Mike Maccagnan, was hired away by the New York Jets to be their new general manager. Also, assistant general manager Brian Gaine is a finalist for the Philadelphia Eagles general manager job. Fortunately for the Texans, they have an in-house scouting star to replace Maccagnan in southeast area scout Mike Martin.

Martin is held in high regard and viewed as one of the best college scouts in the league. He was the scout who helped lead the way for the Texans to sign Arian Foster as an undrafted free agent in 2009. He also was part of Houston targeting Duane Brown late in the first round, a long-term left tackle, and a starting cornerback in Kareem Jackson.

In the past two years, the Texans have leaned heavily on Martin in drafting three young talented starters from his territory, including wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, safety D.J. Swearinger, and defensive end Jadeveon Clowney. The Texans also depended on Martin for some late-round and undrafted free agent steals last offseason with running back Alfred Blue, fullback Jay Prosch, cornerback A.J. Bouye and cornerback Andre Hal.

Martin has led a Texans scouting staff that also hit on the best defensive player in the NFL in J.J. Watt, and you could make a strong argument that Watt is the best player in the league at any position. Some other good picks they made like Glover Quin and Connor Barwin left the team because of salary-cap limitations. Those moves helped Maccagnan’s resume in landing the Jets’ general manager position.

With Maccagnan in New York, it would make sense for Martin to be promoted to the director of college scouting before another team swipes Martin away from the Texans. Front-office changes are rampant across the league, and Martin is on the radar. With the opening of their college scouting position, Houston has an opportunity to maintain possession of one of the best talent evaluators in the business and keep Martin to help maintain the rebuilding of the Texans.

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