Photo via: LSU football/Facebook
With all the action in free agency, it's time to update my mock draft because many teams have filled their needs with free agents. The Houston Texans have the 23rd pick, so let's take a look at how the draft board might stack up.
1. Arizona Cardinals- Oklahoma QB Kyler Murray
Murray should be a great fit in Kingsbury's offense.Composite photo by Brandon Strange
Nothing changes for the Cardinals after free agency. I still think they take Murray and move on from Josh Rosen.
2. San Francisco 49ers- Alabama DL Quinnen Williams
With the 49ers trading for Dee Ford, they pass on Bosa and draft Quinnen Williams.
3. New York Jets- Ohio State DE Nick Bosa
I had the Jets taking DE Josh Allen in Mock 1.0, but with Bosa available this time around, they'll draft him instead of Allen.
4. Oakland Raiders- Kentucky Edge Josh Allen
The Raiders get a pass rusher to replace Khalil Mack.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Michigan DE Rashan Gary
Their defense was horrible last year, so they improve the pass rush with Gary.
6. New York Giants- Ohio State QB Dwayne Haskins
It certainly looks like the Giants are rebuilding, and getting a QB has to be a priority.
7. Jacksonville Jaguars- Washington State OT Andre Dillard
With offensive tackle Cam Robinson coming off an ACL injury, the Jags add a tackle to protect their new QB, Nick Foles.
8. Detriot Lions- Mississippi State DE Montez Sweat
Guys that can sack the QB are hard to find.
9. Buffalo Bills- Florida OT Jawaan Taylor
The Bills have one of the worst offensive lines in the league, so they address their weakness with Taylor.
10. Denver Broncos- LSU LB Devin White
I had the Broncos drafting o-line in my first mock. Now that they added some players in free agency, I think they go defense and add a big time playmaker at linebacker. Is 4.42 a good forty time for a linebacker? I thought so.
11. Cincinnati Bengals- Alabama OL Jonah Williams
12. Green Bay Packers- Clemson DL Christian Wilkins
13. Miami Dolphins- Oklahoma OT Cody Ford
14. Atlanta Falcons- Houston DL Ed Oliver
15. Washington Redskins- Missouri QB Drew Lock
16. Carolina Panthers- Iowa TE T.J. Hockenson
17. New York Giants- Ole Miss WR D.K. Metcalf
18. Minnesota Vikings- Michigan LB Devin Bush
19. Tennessee Titans- Iowa TE Noah Fant
20. Pittsburgh Steelers- Oklahoma WR Marquise Brown
21. Seattle Seahawks- Clemson Edge Clelin Ferrell
22. Baltimore Ravens- Florida Edge Jachai Polite
23. Houston Texans- Ole Miss OT Greg Little
I had the Texans selecting LSU corner Greedy Williams in my first mock, and he's still on the board. The Texans would get better value with Williams, but they have to get a young tackle to develop and eventually protect Deshaun Watson. As of March 19th, the Texans still haven't signed any tackles, so drafting a tackle is a MUST. Little may take some time to develop, just like former Texan Duane Brown, but he should be an improvement over Houston's linemen on their roster currently. Also, his poor Combine performance has his value down a bit, but I don't think he'll be on the board if the Texans wait until the second round to draft a tackle. The fact that Little doesn't have his own Pro Football Focus prospect video says a lot. If he does have one, I couldn't find it. He's still under-the-radar for many talent evaluators and people putting mock drafts together. I think he'll become a quality tackle, but it may take some time.
24. Oakland Raiders (via Bears)- Florida State Edge Brian Burns
25. Philadelphia Eagles- LSU CB Greedy Williams
26. Indianapolis Colts- Mississippi State S Johnathan Abram
27. Oakland Raiders (via Cowboys)- Alabama RB Josh Jacobs
28. Los Angeles Chargers- Clemson DL Dexter Lawrence
29. Kansas City Chiefs- Washington CB Byron Murphy
30. Green Bay Packers (via Saints)- Alabama TE Irv Smith Jr.
31. Los Angeles Rams- Georgia CB Deandre Baker
32. New England Patriots- Kansas State OL Dalton Risner
The Houston Texans are coming off their most dramatic win of the season and now must shift their focus to one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL.
Joe Burrow and the Bengals have won 4 straight games, after getting off to a slow start this season. Cincinnati is favored by about a touchdown, depending on which sportsbook you're looking at.
So this will be a tough challenge on the road for a young team that's all of a sudden dealing with a lot of success. There are several things working in the Texans' favor. Bengals superstar receiver Ja'Marr Chase is dealing with a back injury, so even if he plays, he may not be at full strength.
Also, the Bengals may be looking past the Texans, with a huge division game against the Ravens looming the following week. That game will have massive implications in the AFC North, a division with every team chasing Baltimore sharing a 5-3 record.
The Bengals are also one of the few teams that struggle to run the ball (32nd in rushing) more than the Texans, so maybe Houston can take advantage of that and sell out to keep their receivers in check.
For Houston, it's all about the passing game. But CJ Stroud will have to be careful, as the Bengals have the 2nd-most interceptions (11) in the NFL.
For an early preview of Texans-Bengals, watch the video above for the full breakdown!
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