Jadeveon Clowney will transition to outside linebacker as a rookie in Houston. (Bob Levey/Getty Images)
The Houston Texans fielded calls from teams in regards to the No. 1 overall selection they held in the 2014 NFL draft, but in the end they decided to take the logical route and select arguably the best defensive player to come out of college in the last decade: South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney.
On Friday, just less than a month after they made that selection, they signed Clowney to his rookie deal, according to the Houston Chronicle's John McClain.
Coming out of high school, Clowney was touted as someone who could eventually be one of the best defensive players in the college game, and he lived up to that billing, finishing his career at South Carolina with 130 tackles including 47 for loss with 24 sacks. Undoubtedly, his best year was his sophomore season of 2012, in which he recorded 54 tackles with 23.5 for loss and 13 sacks.
Last season, Clowney's numbers dipped dramatically, drawing criticism that he wasn't dedicated to the game. Regardless, the Texans and first-year head coach Bill O'Brien trusted their scouting and latched onto Clowney's boundless potential during the draft process and will slide him in as a rookie on the same unit as defensive end J.J. Watt, who happens to be considered the best at his position in the NFL right now.
Clowney will be transitioning to the outside linebacker position in defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel's 3-4 scheme.