Bill O’Brien has made it clear at the NFL Meetings here in Orlando that Houston’s brain trust has yet to arrive at a decision.
He told NFL Network that the Texans will take a quarterback somewhere in the draft. So we have that.
He also defended Jadeveon Clowney, who’s been taking heat as a player who might not go 100% every down. “I’ve studied him pretty closely,” O’Brien said. “I dare you to find me a guy who plays 90 snaps like his life’s on the line every game. But when the game’s on the line, Jadeveon plays hard. He’s an explosive player, he’s an instinctive player.”
I’ve been getting media and fan reaction to this quote ranging from “That means he’s a lock to go number one” to “…that means O’Brien will never take him.”
Next, when asked about Blake Bortles’ pro day workout, O’Brien sounded at least mildly impressed but cautioned that pro days should be sharp. “If you’re throwing to guys you’re used to throwing to, the ball should never really hit the ground. You could see better footwork, you could see a more compact delivery.” O’Brien commented based on previous looks at Bortles.
So, that eliminates Teddy Bridgewater, who was said to have a so-so pro day, right? Not so fast.
“People made a big deal about Teddy’s day but I thought he had a decent day. He threw some incompletions but he’s worked extremely hard to improve his footwork, his throwing mechanics.”
Hmmm. Still in play. What about Johnny Football? “I’m sure we’ll see improvement with Johnny when we go up there on Thursday. He’s working with George Whitfield. He’s doing some unique things.”
All options are open. And oh, if you’re thinking of a trade-down possibility, keep in mind that the Texans already have 11 picks. They can’t trade their three compensatory selections but they can deal the others. Expect Rick Smith to be charging his phone a lot over the three day haul. It’s certainly plausible that the Texans feel like they could trade down, then package some of their selections to improve positioning in the early rounds. Again, your guess is probably as good as any.
So we wait. It’ll all be sorted out May 8,9 and 10. Until then, speculation rules the day.