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    TEXANS UNFILTERED

    A Podcast For Your Houston Texans

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Houston Texans GM Nick Caserio Speaking with media

Welcome to my annual Houston Texans draft takeaways, this year there was much more to talk about with more draft picks! Most importantly having a 1st and 2nd draft after a drought, due in part because of the previous regime.

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Houston Texans OC Pep Hamilton

These past couple of years have been interesting as the Stanford ties have grown exponentially inside the Houston Texans organization.

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It's Christmas Eve, the 2022 NFL Draft is finally here! It's time for the final mock draft of the season, which will be my best guess at what will actually happen, come Thursday evening.

In this mock there are zero QBs going top-10, three 1st-round trades and plenty of emphasis on the trenches, WRs and CBs. Strap in for one final mock draft ride, I promise it'll be a smooth one.

For an in-depth look into my thoughts on each of these draft prospects and 200+ more, check out my 2022 NFL Draft Guide with scouting reports, big boards, positional rankings and more!

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With the 2022 NFL Draft this week, the excitement brewing among Houston Texans fans is at an all-time high. With a full chamber of bullets at our disposal - 11 picks in total, 6 in the top 100 and 2 in the first round - Nick Caserio and co. have a massive opportunity to reshape this barren roster.

It's usually difficult to decipher which prospects any NFL team is highly interested in because teams don't like to show their cards and love to throw out smokescreens to deceive their competitors. Furthermore, there are numerous events at which teams can meet with prospects - the Senior Bowl, Combine, Pro Days, etc - but these events are not all weighed equally when measuring a team's interest in a player.

The crown jewel of these visits is the "Top-30" visit, in which NFL teams have 30 invites to spread throughout the 2000+ prospects in this year's class. Think of it as a shortlist for prospects that the team wants to do more homework on. Whether it's for their 1st round pick, which would seemingly be the new face of the franchise. Or for players with injury question...

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Pass catchers are becoming a more and more valuable asset in today's pass-heavy NFL. Every year, young and talented wide receivers are found all throughout the NFL draft and prove to be instant contributors. The 2022 WR class is a talented one, but more so deep than star-studded.

To account for the depth of this class, here are my top-20 WRs out of the 28 I watched - I only did a top-10 for QBs which you can find here. In this article, the top four WRs are the most fun part to debate and could all easily garner the WR1 label. Let me know your thoughts on my rankings via Twitter and if you'd like to gain a deeper understanding for these WRs and the others I watched, check our my 2022 Draft Guide.

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As the 2022 NFL Draft nears closer and closer I will be releasing my positional rankings! This will provide a brief idea of what the player provides on the field, the score I gave them purely based on their film and which round I would select them. The scouting report summary comes from each player's individual scouting report in my 2022 NFL Draft Guide, so if you want to learn more about the prospects in this class, you can find that here!

First up, quarterbacks! While this class has been touted as weaker - and it is - statistically, some of these QBs will become franchise guys. We've heard the 2017 QB class was weak, but Deshaun Watson and Patrick Mahomes proved scouts and media wrong. Who from the 2022 class has the chance to do the same?

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Houston Texans GM Nick Caserio

With so many roster needs in the long term and 11 picks in this draft, it's hard to project what direction the Houston Texans will go in 2022. However, when you look at the type of prospect the Houston Texans took in the 2021 NFL Draft for reference, It's not hard to notice the type of players they were looking for.

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2022 NFL Draft Guide Texans Thoughts

The best time of the year is upon us! The NFL Draft offers teams the best opportunity to build long-term success for the future. I hope my Houston Texans go home with a haul! The Draft also resembles a monumental time in these college players' lives as they fulfill their dreams and embark into the NFL world.

Predicting the success of these players is extremely difficult. My rankings will be different than your rankings or your favorite NFL Draft experts' rankings and that's okay. Whether you agree or disagree, I appreciate you for viewing my guide and welcome you to hit me up on Twitter (@Texans_Thoughts) to discuss whichever player you want!

My guide includes in-depth scouting reports on 222 players in the 2022 NFL Draft Class. I try to paint a picture of the prospect, providing measurements, injury history, background information, strengths, weaknesses, a summary and the best scheme fit + role projection to maximize a player's success.

Furthermore, you will find three different big boards, a brief explanation...

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The Houston Texans continue to reshape the roster and have brought in a new yet familiar face. Marlon Mack, the former Indianapolis Colts running back was added a week after being brought in for a workout.

This signing mirrors others GM Nick Caserio has made, buying low on players who have flashed talent but have seen their stock drop off due to a recent injury. These types of players have varying degrees of reputation, from wide receiver DaeSean Hamilton, to offensive guard AJ Cann, to linebacker Blake Cashman. Undoubtedly though, Mack has shown the most production out of this group.

The 26-year-old offers the potential of a lead RB in a committee, something the Texans have severely lacked for far too long. The million-dollar question becomes, how likely is it that Mack returns to his 2019 form - after missing all of 2020 and...

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How can a safety be the best player in the NFL Draft? Well, Notre Dame's Kyle Hamilton cannot be defined by just one label. Don't get me wrong; he is outstanding at doing "safety" things - over his three seasons, he's played 856 snaps in coverage per PFF and only gave up one total touchdown. That being said, look at Hamilton like a chess piece. He's not just a knight that can move in a limited "L" shape. He's a queen that is multi-directional and multi-positional, making him the most valuable piece on the board.

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One man's loss is another man's treasure.

After enduring a season-ending torn ACL that wiped out DaeSean Hamilton's fourth season in the NFL, the Denver Broncos cut the wide receiver in May of 2021. Nearly a year later, the Houston Texans brought in Hamilton for a workout on March 11th, 2022 and liked what they saw. Hamilton inked a one-year contract with financial terms unknown at the time.

Hamilton is the latest player coming off a down or unavailable year that general manager Nick Caserio has decided to take a chance on....

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The Houston Texans finally found a franchise quarterback. We watched Deshaun Watson grow for four seasons. He was on pace for a historic rookie season in 2017. He made the playoffs in his first healthy season in 2018. He brought us so close to the AFC Championship game in 2019. He even lead the NFL in passing yards in 2020 Then, the nightmare ensued.

From an underwhelming 4-12 season, to the Bill O'Brien firing, to Watson's trade request and sexual assault allegations - the journey to this point has been far from ordinary. Now, after a recruiting process that took the NFL world for a spin, Watson has chosen the team that traded away the draft pick which selected him in 2017 - the Cleveland Browns.

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After a relatively quiet first day in free agency that saw the Houston Texans sign Jacksonville Jaguars right guard AJ Cann, a second "outside" free agent is added to the fold. MJ Stewart, formerly a Cleveland Brown, signed a one-year, three million dollar contract with the Texans, per Aaron Wilson of Pro Football Network. Who is Stewart, what are his strengths, weaknesses and potential role for Lovie Smith's defense?

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The light at the end of the tunnel can finally be seen for Houston Texans fans. Since the Harris County Grand Jury did not find enough evidence to charge quarterback Deshaun Watson with sexual assault, numerous NFL teams are displaying interest in trading for the franchise star.

The market is heating up with a trade likely to be completed before the 2022 NFL Draft in late April. The Texans are expected to grant interested teams permission to speak with Watson and said teams...

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The 2022 NFL Combine was historically impressive with every position group running jaw-dropping 40 times and many prospects making themselves some serious money. The tricky thing about these athletic tests is that not every player runs 40 yards on the field as fast as they do on the track - especially with no pads and after months of refining their technique.

Therefore, for this article I wanted to accomplish three things; firstly, watch some of these exciting athletes who I hadn't seen before. Secondly, see if their testing scores are representative of their in-game athleticism. Thirdly, project where I would draft them if I was the Texans GM, Nick Caserio.

The five players I will break down today are not first-round prospects but all fit the Houston Texans in some way or another and would bring a much-needed boost of athleticism to the team. Without further ado, let's get into it because the film don't lie.

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With the next stage in the offseason nearing, free agency provides a time for Nick Caserio to add new personnel to the Houston Texans. With 2021 defensive coordinator, Lovie Smith, being promoted to head coach and not hiring a replacement for his old position, the defensive scheme will remain intact. I previously previewed defensive line free agents which you can find here.

Next, let's look at some potential new faces at corner and safety who would fit the Texans scheme, budget and timeline. For cornerbacks, Lovie - and other Tampa 2 disciples - have historically prioritized size and physicality, dependable tackling and zone awareness. For safeties, range from the hash marks to the sideline is key and reliable tackling is welcomed.

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Trenches win football games. Lovie Smith is certainly a believer in this mentality as historically, his NFL defenses have been built around prioritizing the defensive line. The Houston Texans have some promising young guns in Jonathan Greenard and Roy Lopez, maybe even Ross Blacklock, but have key free agents in starters Maliek Collins and Jacob Martin.

With the legal tampering period beginning March 14th and the free agency start date on March 16th, let's preview free agents that the Texans should look to sign, starting with the DL.

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It's not the size of the boat it's the motion of the ocean.

Roger McCreary is one of the most talented cornerbacks in the 2022 NFL Draft and yet he is going to be eliminated from some NFL teams' draft boards because of his 29 1/4" long arms.

Much of the buzz surrounding McCreary's stock has revolved around that one measurement but it does not tell his full story. He's displayed the work ethic, production and on-field traits that make him worthy of a first-round pick.

McCreary was a three-star recruit who originally played safety before moving to corner for Auburn. He improved every year, raising his tackle numbers and ball production; culminating in a 2021 season where he led the SEC in...

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A horrific hiring process results in an experienced candidate but shows Texans front office has not learned from their mistakes.

The Houston Texans embarked on a rocky rollercoaster of a head coach search and after three weeks they hire the in-house candidate, defensive coordinator Lovie Smith.

Beloved by his players, Smith's 21 years of NFL coaching experience - with 11 as a head coach of the Chicago Bears and Tampa Bay Buccaneers - makes him the most battle-tested head coach to be hired this cycle.

Smith has been in this position before and the results have been mixed. He had a winning record in five out of his nine seasons with a talented Bears team and most importantly appeared in the 2006 Super Bowl, where they lost to the Indianapolis Colts.

During his second stint, Lovie led the Bucs to an 8-24 record over two seasons, before enough was enough. A common excuse for his lack of results was that Bucs team lacked...

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With Senior Bowl practices wrapped up I wanted to provide the future NFL players I thought stood out the most and would fit the Houston Texans needs - there's a lot of them!

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Houston Texans GM Nick Caserio

Taking a collective view of where the Texans are at with almost two weeks in the books since they fired David Culley from his head coaching duties.

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Houston Texans GM Nick Caserio

The Houston Texans fired David Culley on Thursday afternoon, so let's make a quick checklist on what we've learned.

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David Culley survived as the Houston Texans head coach for less than 365 days. He was officially hired on January 27th, 2021 which was a surprise to many and fired on January 13th, 2022 which was also a surprise to many.

I maintain my stance that there were more qualified candidates for the job but Culley was Nick Caserio and Cal McNair's "guy". So why did Culley last just one season and was that the plan all along?

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One hundred and ninety four. That's how many rookies were drafted ahead of Roy Lopez, in the 2021 NFL Draft. The Arizona talent fell into the sixth round until the Houston Texans scooped him up with their final pick. In a small draft class - just five rookies in total - there were certainly not very high expectations for any of the newbies.

Lopez, however, has far exceeded what seemed realistic and is shining not only as a starter, but as the best rookie in the Texans' class. Let's break down what this star pupil has been doing well, why his game has translated so quickly and some improvement areas to look forward to in the future.

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With the Houston Texans enjoying a bye week, let's look ahead to the 2022 NFL Draft and analyze the man who will be making nine picks (for now). Has Nick Caserio finally stepped out of the powerful shadow casted by Bill Belichick and become ready to reinvent his draft process?

Caserio has completed 13 drafts since becoming the New England Patriots Director of Player Personnel back in 2008, to becoming the Texans General Manager in 2021. With over a decade of experience, one would naturally think Caserio has gotten positive results, but in fact, more of his picks have "busted" than succeeded.

This article isn't intended to be all doom and gloom - I'm going to do my best to explain why the Patriots have had mediocre draft success, what attributes Caserio has valued in prospects...

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Houston Texans

No matter what the players, coaches, or general manager Nick Caserio said, the outlook of the 2021 season was going to be a bleak one for the Houston Texans.

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Rookie quarterback Davis Mills has had a rollercoaster-like 6.5 games for the Houston Texans and his evaluation is one of many debacles that divides the fanbase this season.

Contrary to popular belief, I don't hate Davis Mills. I don't want to see him fail - that's a pretty sad way to think about the quarterback for my favorite sports team in the world. What I do want is to be realistic, so that we aren't setting too lofty of expectations for the kid and end up getting hurt in the process - we've endured enough pain already.

In a nutshell, Mills has had some bright moments this season no doubt but if the Texans are going to put their faith into him as their franchise quarterback of the future, they'll fall into the dangerous trap of mediocrity and struggle to win a Super Bowl.

To see how I came to that conclusion, let's discuss Mills' performance so far, attempt to project his future and see what that potentially means for the Houston Texans hope of turning around the organization.

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We are officially mid-way through the 2021-2022 college football season, thus it’s time to check in on NFL Draft prospects’ stock. This one is simple, I give you my midseason top three players at each position and if you have any thoughts, please feel free to @ me on Twitter to discuss! Let’s begin.

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Nick Caserio, Houston Texans GM

Hate to burst everyone’s bubble, but I have more questions than answers at this time regarding the Houston Texans and Deshaun Watson’s trade saga.

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After starting just one game and playing 24% of the snaps as a rookie in 2020, Jonathan Greenard is making the most of his starting opportunities in 2021. Six games into the 2021-2022 NFL season, Greenard has started the last four matches - he only played in 25% of the snaps vs the Bills so it's kind of three starts - in which he's tallied an impressive 13 tackles, four sacks, six tackles for loss, five quarterback hits and eight pressures.

He's done all this while still not playing as much as the typical "starter" does, averaging 55% snap count in his three starts and being incredibly efficient to the point of being 2nd in the NFL in snaps per sack (per Ryan Riddle).

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Davis Mills, Houston Texans

The Houston Texans have a delicate matter to manage between the present and the future.

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The Houston Texans have a non-existent run game and it's killing their offense

Peanut butter is pivotal to many effective dishes - a PB&J just wouldn't have the right balance without peanut butter, a Pad Thai just wouldn't have the same nutty flavor without peanut butter and the Houston Texans offense just doesn't run smoothly without peanut butter.

In many ways, an offensive coordinator's run game is similar to a chef's peanut butter. They are moldable to the personnel they're paired with, both can be versatile in how they are deployed and often times neither are the center of attention, but the carefully crafted masterpiece would fall apart without it.

Just like peanut butter, the run game is supposed to be a reliable element that offensive coordinators use as a foundation to build off of. The best minds in the game force defenses to respect the run and put them in conflict of assignment to create advantages in the passing game.

We've all heard the phrase, "Establish the run" and I think Los Angeles Chargers Head Coach, Brandon Staley talks...

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Centers are becoming a premium position and the 2022 NFL draft class can provide teams with the pivot they need

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As the Houston Texans head to Cleveland to take on the Browns, I've done my best to construct a rough game plan that can improve our odds of winning. If you missed part one, I highlighted the Texans defense versus the Browns offense which is going to be a tough task to handle.

In this article, I'll look at the other side of the ball and break down what Tim Kelly, Tyrod Taylor and co. can do to put some points on the board, let's dive in.

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The Houston Texans sit atop the AFC South after their victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars in the Week One commencement of the 2021-2022 NFL season. In Week Two, they head to Cleveland to take on the 0-1 Browns, who fell to the Kansas City Chiefs.

While I would be lying to you if I told you I was very confident in a Texans victory this week, I'm not counting us out and believe that on any given Sunday, any team can win or lose to any team. With that being said, I've constructed a game plan (defensive keys Friday, offensive keys Saturday!) that can improve the Texans' odds in achieving victory - let's get into it!

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The Houston heat is bearing down on two men; quarterback Deshaun Watson and general manager Nick Caserio stare into each other's eyes like a classic Western showdown, awaiting the first blink. Deshaun and his camp have emptied their clip, utilizing the media like a 35 revolver in an attempt to shape the narrative in their favor. Nick doesn't care, hasn't budged, and when asked to comment, replies, "what's a Tweeter?".

With less than a week to go until the start of the 2021-2022 NFL Season, the Houston Texans just officially named Tyrod Taylor as their starting quarterback. There was little shock involved with this announcement and confirms that the most likely scenario the team is heading towards is paying Watson around 10 million to be inactive for the rest of the season. The Texans will likely provide the...

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Oregon's Kayvon Thibodeaux has the inside track on being the best prospect in the 2022 NFL Draft Class and the type of blue-chip EDGE player who you can build a dominant defense around. As I continue to break down the top college prospects who could potentially be a foundational building block for the Houston Texans rebuild, Kayvon playing the most important non-QB position in football creates serious intrigue, which he backs up.

It's time to discuss who Kayvon is, how he harnesses his elite athleticism to win on the field, what areas of his game I'd like to see him improve upon going forward and why I'm confident he has the tools to take those steps.

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Justin Reid, Houston Texans

Welcome to our first Houston Texans mailbag! Thanks to the Texans fans who participated, we have plenty to talk about for our first feature.

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With the college football season starting today it brings me great joy to officially kick off what will be one of the most important draft cycles for the Houston Texans.

While the team has been showing a much better performance in preseason than majority expected - don't pencil in the #1 pick just yet - building through the draft is the best proven way to build a sustainable contender.

Thus, the anonymity of where our first round pick (and the rest of our draft capital that Nick Caserio loves trading for) lands motivates me to cast a decently wide net in regards to this article.

I am going to provide an early name for each position on offense and defense (sorry special teams) that I believe fits the Texans identity and scheme.

They won't all be projected first rounders or the top players at their respective positions, but that's the fun part - let's learn about some names to keep an eye on this year!

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I saw a different Houston Texans team than in years past...

The energy and passion was evident on the field as teammates rallied to the ball, fought physically in the trenches and celebrated doing what they love to do - play fun football.

Simply put, this Saturday was FUN. In a preseason match vs the Green Bay Packers who went 13-3 last year, not many expected the Houston Texans to come out victorious, let alone in the convincing fashion they displayed.

I know, I know, it's only one game in preseason, but a W is a W. If we had lost, the narrative by the NFL media - and some fans - would be that we're the same ol' Texans and a poverty franchise that is going nowhere.

So you BET I'm going to be happy when we start off the season on the right page and display a drastic change from the dumpster fire that was 2020.

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With the unresolved Quarterback problem at the helm of the Houston Texans stratosphere, I felt compelled to evaluate some of the top college QBs in the 2022 NFL Draft Class.

This will be the first edition in a multi-part series breaking down who the experts have among the top of the prospect food chain, and some sleepers who could potentially rise and surprise - I hope you enjoy.

As voted by y'all on Twitter, let's start with the cream of the crop, Spencer Rattler, the - for the most part - consensus top QB in all of college football.

I watched the All-22 view of 4 of his 2020 games; Kansas State, Texas, TCU and Baylor....

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Rookie seasons in the NFL are incredibly tough. In a 2020 year that many will want to forget, Houston Texans rookie DT Ross Blacklock, had just about every obstacle imaginable in his path to success. Virtual rookie minicamp, a defensive system that didn't fit his skillset and multiple injuries to teammates that forced him into uncomfortable positions.

Despite the challenges that led many to question the impact of the Texans 40th overall pick, Ross' keen self-awareness and understanding that "it's a marathon not a sprint" will prove valuable for the 2021 season.

It would've been very easy for Blacklock to buy into the negativity surrounding him and the Texans as a whole. Instead, he's blocked out the noise, put his head down and worked incredibly hard to prove his doubters wrong.

Ross has been one of...

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Hello, it's been a while - about two months - since my last article. I took some time off to clear my head of the constant negativity surrounding the Texans, work on myself a bit and focus on some career opportunities. NOW IM BACK BABY!

With the 2021 NFL season knocking on the doorstep we've got one big checkpoint to pass, training camp. Our Houston Texans will meet back up and look to implement new schemes, build more chemistry among players+coaches and of course, COMPETE. To keep this intro relatively short and sweet, here's my preview for what to look for and expect out of the next month.

IF you aren't a big fan of reading, I get it! Here's a video version of this article for my fellow Texans fans with poor attention spans like me!

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social media

@RealRonTheShow Ron I respect and love u but lets lay this out real quick. And let me preface by saying the hiring of black coaches isnt a problem, but the Texans just hired a black coach and will hire a black D coordinator, and keeping on offensive coordinator to keep their black QB happy.