Are Bill O'Brien and Co. really serious about staying at No. 1 or is this a last-ditch effort to work a trade? (Patric Schneider/AP)
The situation still could change right up until approximately 8:10 p.m. ET Thursday night, but for now the Houston Texans appear to have made up their minds on how to use the No. 1 pick. The answer, in part: They'll keep it.
That news comes via ESPN's Adam Schefter, who tweeted that "Houston is now locked in on its player and is not expecting a trade, per sources. Texans happy to sit at 1 and take player it wants."
No word yet on who that player is, but South Carolina DE Jadeveon Clowney has to be considered the heavy leader in the clubhouse. Other realistic options there include Khalil Mack, OTs Greg Robinson and Jake Matthews, and any number of quarterbacks. Clowney, though, has spent the past couple months reasserting himself as the projected top prospect in this draft class.
MORE: 2014 NFL Mock Draft | 2014 NFL draft rumors | NFL draft needs: AFC | NFC
The Texans had been rumored to be exploring a trade down, with the focus centering on Atlanta's No. 6 pick -- the Falcons would like to add both an offensive tackle and a pass rusher early in this draft. Perhaps the offers coming in from Atlanta did not do enough to whet Houston's whistle; the Texans also may have decided that dropping back several spots puts them too much at risk of missing out on a player they wanted.
Of course, there's also the possibility that Houston has floated this notion in hopes of spurring action from those teams sitting further down the board. The window on a trade up, be it by Atlanta or another team, is rapidly closing. Houston at least has given the impression of nudging it further shut.
UCF's Blake Bortles and Texas A&M's Johnny Manziel -- not Louisville's Teddy Bridgewater -- appeared to be the main options if Houston (and new head coach/noted QB guru Bill O'Brien) decided to nab a quarterback with the No. 1 spot. O'Brien previously said that the Texans may add two quarterbacks during this draft, to compete with Case Keenum and Ryan Fitzpatrick in camp.
The first addition may have to wait until at least later in Round 1, should the Texans opt to trade back into Thursday's proceedings from their No. 33 spot (the first pick in Round 2 Friday).
[si_video id="video_23B833FF-9074-33C8-BD26-A935DD1C4563" height="470"]