Houston Texans – In my opinion the Texans had the best draft of the entire league. Their first three picks should start from day one and all three had first round grades at one time.
Watt was projected anywhere from 8-15 on most mock’s. Prior to the draft we spoke about how talented the Texans were, particularly on offense, but their D was soft. I also stated I am not a big Wade fan, but he is not the head coach and has a lot less pressure as the coordinator. In Watt he has a very productive, high-motor player who brings work ethic and leadership skills.
I love Brooks Reed. He reminds me of ex-Ram and Steeler Kevin Greene. Like Watt he is productive & has a high motor. He also has some attitude which should rub off on the rest of the D. Brandon Harris represents great value at #60. He is very athletic and also very versatile. Rashad Carmichael and Shiloh Keo add needed depth to a very shaky secondary.
I think this is the year the Texans supplant the Colts at the top of the division!
Indinapolis Colts – The Colts had a good draft. They added good players who were taken at slots that represented good value and also addressed need.
Castonzo was projected as high as #9 to the Boys. Getting him at #22 makes this draft. Many consider Castonzo as the lineman most ready to start at the next level, which he should from day 1, which will make Peyton smile.
The Colts moved up in round 2 to add guard Ben Ljalana. Ljalana is a very tough player, but needs a little seasoning. He will probably be pressing for playing time very soon.
Drake Nevis will add depth at the defensive line and should be a situational contributor as a rookie. The Colts seem to keep drafting running backs. They used another high pick, this one a third, on Delone Carter to add some depth and versatility to the position
Tennessee Titans – I am a Jake Locker fan, but did they need to draft him at #8? Could they have traded down (aka the Skins) and picked up someone’s #2? Locker has a lot of Vince Young in him and fortunately for Titans fans he is the antithesis of Young off the field. Locker is a superb athlete and a good leader. With that said, those traits didn’t translate into wins for the Huskies. Gabbert was available at #8 and the Titans passed. Watching these two and measuring their success against one another will be fascinating over the years, especially since they’ll square off twice a year.
Aside from QB the Titans major needs were on the other side of the ball. They greatly improved their front 7 with Akeem Ayers, who was projected in round 1 in many mocks. He is a versatile, athletic linebacker who is always around the football. Jurrell Casey and Colin McCarthy are two active players who always seem to make plays. They should add depth and contribute on specials as rookies.
This draft can’t be judged until we know how Locker does. But as we sit here today, not playing a snap of the 2011 season, the Titans added good players and addressed their major areas of need.
Jacksonville Jaguars – Another tough draft to grade one week removed from the draft. This draft, more so than most, can’t be graded until we know what Gabbert is.
As we indicated in our pre-draft analysis of the Jags they needed a QB for the long term. Many teams had Gabbert graded ahead of top pick Cam Newton and as high as the top 5 on many mock’s. They did give up their #2 to get him, which to me is a questionable move.
They did pick up two other solid prospects in offensive lineman William Rackley from Lehigh. Coming from a small school he’ll need a little seasoning but he should become a starter down the road. Cecil Short is another small school prospect from Mount Union who adds needed depth at wideout.
Unfortunately they did very little to address their D so look for them to be active on that front if and when free agency begins.