The Houston Texans rode a nine game winning streak into the playoffs. They will be looking forward to the 2019 NFL Draft to get back there next season.
It was a rough start to the 2018 regular season for the Houston Texans. They opened up with three straight losses, including to the eventual Super Bowl Champion Patriots. Week 4 was an early make-or-break game for the team. They wound up beating their division rivals, the Indianapolis Colts, in overtime. Little did they know that win would be the start of something special. Houston won their next eight games. A streak that kicked off with a win over the Colts was stopped by those same Colts. The Texans managed to finish the season 11-5 and win the AFC South.
Houston will now need to re-tool in the NFL Draft. Their offseason also leaves them with some questions. None of those questions loom larger than what to do with former first overall pick Jadeveon Clowney. It seems like the two may not be able to hammer out a long term deal which could lead the Texans to franchise tag Clowney. It would not be smart, despite the depth and talent up front, to let a solid young edge player get away like that.
Other free agents include corner Kareem Jackson, defensive back Tyrann Mathieu, and running back Alfred Blue. Mathieu seems the least likely to return, after signing a one-year “prove it” deal with Houston last season. The team will need to find some players for their secondary. Not only are the two aforementioned players likely to leave but the team could part ways with Johnathan Joseph, Andre Hal and Kevin Johnson as cap casualties.
Speaking of the cap, Houston has a sizable chunk of money to work with. That is the benefit of having a quarterback on a rookie deal like they do with Deshaun Watson. Unfortunately the team has substantial holes, despite the 11-5 record and winning their conference.
Here is how Houston can utilize the 2019 NFL Draft to get better and stay atop the AFC South. This mock draft was done using Fanspeak’s On the Clock tool.