NFL Draft: Smith is open to all possibilities
The Texans hold the top pick in the upcoming NFL draft. But it doesn’t mean they’ll necessarily be the team to pick there.
On Friday, as the team introduced their new head coach Bill O’Brien, GM Rick Smith and owner Bob McNair wouldn’t rule out the possibility of trading away the first-overall selection.
“I think, as you know, my general approach to the draft is to be open to all possibilities, be prepared for all possibilities and obviously, we believe whole-heartedly in value,” Smith said after the press conference concluded. “I don’t think you take a particular position just because you need a particular position at any point in the draft, especially the first pick. So we’ll rank it, we’ll value it and we’ll make good choices if the opportunity presents itself to move back because it is a very valuable pick, then we’ll entertain those as well. We’ll get a good player or we’ll move and get good value for the pick and improve our football team.”
This is the third time the Texans have had the first-overall pick. The first time, they selected a quarterback (David Carr) and the second time, they selected a defensive end (Mario Williams). This year, the top two players taken might very well be a quarterback and a defensive end. For the Texans, Williams worked out much better than Carr.
“The defensive player worked out better than the offensive player,” McNair said. “That won’t lock us into anything. There’s always a possibility. Rick and the coaches will trade around. Maybe we’ll trade down and still get a quarterback that can do the job and get an outstanding defensive player. It’s an exciting time. Everything’s a moving target. Lot of different pieces.”
McNair said if the Texans do end up selecting a quarterback, the team would probably bring in a veteran QB so that they don’t have to rely on a rookie.
“That’s tough putting a rookie in there and expecting them to be able play right off the bat,” McNair said. “There’ve been a couple of them that have done it but a number of them didn’t do so well. I think having that veteran presence is important.”
O’Brien will be involved the draft process, just like coaches in the past have been involved, Smith said. O’Brien has been touted as a quarterback guru, which might be important because the Texans struggled at the position last season.
“I think improving our football team is priority,” Smith said when asked if quarterback is still the priority. “I wouldn’t say right now … obviously we’ve got a situation right now where we’ve got to get that position resolved because we didn’t have effective play at the position last year. So that is one of the big priorities but we’ve got to improve the overall football team.”