Did Texans 'Do Their Homework'? AFC South Grades - NFL Draft

The Houston Texans add long-term pieces, but how did the rest of the AFC South perform?
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HOUSTON -- The Houston Texans didn't get better over the weekend, but they also didn't get worse. It's hard to say anything positive, though, without a first-or-second-round selection. 

It's also impossible to negate the fact that the Texans' offseason likely culminated into the decision to select a quarterback with the No. 67 selection. 

Adding Stanford QB Davis Mills almost all but says that Deshaun Watson's time in Houston could be over. Watson made it clear he didn't want to remain in Houston, so the Texans have prepared for the worst in all aspects.  

"Davis (Mills) played in a good program at Stanford. Coach (David) Shaw does a great job with their program offensively," Caserio told reporters Friday evening. "Has some of the attributes that a quarterback that we like and possess and played well with his opportunities when he was on the field, so it was a situation where we like the player, we spent time with him before the draft, did our research, did our homework."

Houston only finished with five draft picks after trading up for Michigan wide receiver Nico Collins and TCU linebacker Garret Wallow. After adding 37 players this offseason, Caserio and head coach David Culley are looking for the best players that fit the Texans. 

READ MORE: Texans Add TCU Versatile LB Wallow for New Scheme

Other teams value adding more selections instead "fits" come draft weekend. Who's to say either method is wrong. 

The AFC South might become a juggernaut for years to come if teams hit the way they think. Here's TexansDaily.com's grade on the AFC South's draft performance.


3. (67), Davis Mills, QB, Stanford
3. (89), Nico Collins, WR, Michigan
5. (147), Brevin Jordan, TE, Miami, Fla.
5. (170), Garret Wallow, LB, TCU
6. (195), Roy Lopez, DT, Arizona

The hope is that Mills' upside from Shaw's NFL-style offense will help him adapt by midseason. If he hits, Houston can use the picks next season — including ones used in the presumed Watson trade — to build on both sides of the ball. If he doesn't, Houston likely is picking top-five with a range of 2022 QBs to look at. 

Collins' 6-foot-4 frame adds size for the future, while his speed can be a vertical presence opposite Brandin Cooks. Jordan was a steal in Round 5 as many believed he was the No. 3 tight end prospect in the class. He can do a bit of everything in both the passing game and blocking downfield. 

Wallow adds value on special teams. Lopez adds depth in the trenches. Caserio should have added a cornerback, but they addressed long-term needs. 

GRADE: C+   


1. (22), Caleb Farley, CB, Virginia Tech
2. (53), Dillon Radunz, OT, North Dakota St.
3. (92), Monty Rice, LB, Georgia
3. (100), Elijah Molden, CB, Washington
4. (109), Dez Fitzpatrick, WR, Louisville
4. (135), Rashad Weaver, DE, Pittsburgh
6. (205), Racey McMath, WR, LSU
6. (215), Brady Breeze, S, Oregon

It's an overall high-risk, high-reward class for Tennessee. Farley has back concerns and opted out for 2020. When healthy, he's an ideal zone cornerback that can time turnovers perfectly. 

The same could be said Radunz, who opted-out due to the FCS schedule change. The level of competition might be too much in Year 1. Can he develop into what Isaiah Wilson was supposed to be. Molden replaces Desmond King's role in the slot and thrived at Washington inside. 

If Farley and Radunz hit early, Tennessee shouldn't lose ground in the division. If they struggle, this could be a down class for the former Houston franchise. 


READ MORE: Texans Undrafted Free Agency Begins On Offense; NFL Draft Tracker


1. (21), Kwity Paye, Edge, Michigan
2. (54), Dayo Odeyingbo, DE, Vanderbilt
4. (127), Kyle Granson, TE, SMU
5. (165), Shawn Davis, S, Florida
6. (218), Sam Ehlinger, QB, Texas
7. (229), Mike Strachan, WR, Charleston, W. Va.
7. (248), Will Fries, G, Penn State 

Many believed GM Chris Ballard would trade back from No. 21. Instead, he stayed put and added a high-end starter on the outside in Paye. As one of the top pass-rushers, the former Wolverine is exceptional off the edge, but must improve against the run. 

Odeyingbo will hopefully replace the production of Denico Autry up the middle. The rest are just role players who could be used on special teams now. The addition of Ehlinger is interesting after adding Carson Wentz in free agency. 

Indianapolis has little holes at the starting roles. The question now is what will happen if injuries occur?  



1. (1), Trevor Lawrence, QB, Clemson
1. (25), Travis Etienne, RB, Clemson
2. (33), Tyson Campbell, CB, Georgia
2. (45), Walker Little, OT, Stanford
3. (65), Andre Cisco, S, Syracuse
4. (106), Jay Tufele, DT, USC
4. (121), Jordan Smith, Edge, Ala-Birmingham
5. (145), Luke Farrell, TE, Ohio State
6. (209), Jalen Camp, WR, Georgia Tech

No surprise on the No. 1 selection, but immense surprise at No. 25. Urban Meyer told reporters he was interested in Kadarius Toney should he fall to No. 25, but instead selected a running back to be used on third downs. 


"He's certainly a third-down back and he's a guy that's a matchup issue for the defense," Meyer said Thursday

Both Campbell and Cisco should see reps after a putrid secondary in 2020. Little could be a surprise as the former five-star will have a season to learn. The Day 3 additions of Tufele and Smith are ones fans should love down the line. 

Outside of perhaps overdrafting Etienne, it was a good first draft for Meyer and staff. 


CONTINUE READING: Grading Texans 2021 NFL Draft: Trades And Value Are Key