7 critical takeaways from Houston Texans GM's Combine presser

Houston Texans GM Nick Caserio spoke at the NFL Combine on Tuesday afternoon and answered questions from the media about Deshaun Watson, what his team will be looking for in the year's draft, the changes that have occurred for the team over the last twelve months, and much more. To see the full presser, be sure to watch the video above.

1. Caserio made it clear that their approach will be different this year because they have more draft picks in the early rounds. Meaning, they were able to rule out a lot of players last year because the team didn't have a pick until the 3rd round. Caserio went on to say what's most important is to know as many players as possible and collect information. He made a point of saying the group that's the most pressing is the underclassmen.

2. Caserio later used defensive lineman Roy Lopez as an example of a player that contributed to the team last season, despite being drafted in the 6th round. Knowing the bottom half of draft eligible players and potentially undrafted players, is just as valuable as knowing the top prospects, according to Caserio. Meaning you can't pay everyone big money, you're going to have to find some bargains to help fill out your roster.

3. When asked what the Texans look for in players, Caserio said "Philosophically, in terms of players. Competitiveness, toughness, consistency, grit, and a certain level of football aptitude, intelligence." I'm just glad he didn't say tough, smart, and dependable. We heard plenty of that from Bill O'Brien. Caserio went on to say they are often wanting the players to teach the Texans what they were asked to do in college. Just to get a baseline of understanding for the staff.

4. Of course, Caserio was asked about Deshaun Watson. But he didn't really shed any new light on the situation. The team is taking it day-by-day...blah, blah, blah...and they'll do what's best for the team. At least that's how I heard it.

5. Some positions of interest Texans fans will be excited about are tight end and running back. When asked about these positions, Caserio said they are certainly going to evaluate them. Not exactly the passion we were hoping for, but he can't tell everyone what he wants to do specifically. Well, he can, but that wouldn't be smart. Currently, Brevin Jordan is the only tight end under contract and running back could certainly use an overhaul as well. Rex Burkhead, Scottie Phillips, and Darius Anderson, who was signed to a reserve-futures deal, are the only running backs under contract.

6. Have we finally seen the end of David Johnson as a Texan? One can only hope. Caserio didn't come right out and say it, but they are clearly looking to upgrade both RB and TE position groups. Drafting a young RB in the second, third, or fourth round would definitely excite the fan base.

7. Finally, Caserio was asked about the decision to pass on Brian Flores as head coach, and said he did what he felt was best for the team, and that was hiring Lovie Smith.

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Here's a closer look at the Houston Texans offseason challenges, opportunities

The Athletic Football Show's Robert Mays and Nate Tice delve into the significance of the Houston Texans' offseason. Discussing the direction they believe the team should take to capitalize on the achievements from 2023.

Whether it be the draft or free agency, be sure to watch the video above as the guys layout how the franchise should address their needs for 2024 and beyond.

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