HOUSTON — Nick Caserio is a general manager who is always open for business. The Houston Texans have the No. 3 selection in the 2022 NFL Draft, and Caserio has not shied away about the chance of trading the pick.
Caserio first mentioned the possibility to deal the pick on Sports Radio 610 in January. And it's an idea he echoed Tuesday when speaking to the media at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis.
"The people that have followed us, we're pretty open-minded, [and] we're pretty flexible," Caserio said. "Whether it's a trade. Whether it's a move back in the draft. Whether it's a move up. Whether it's a trade with another team in the league. Whatever it is, we're going to explore all avenues."
Caserio added that it's early in the draft process for the Texans to decide to trade the pick, as conversations normally take place closer to the draft. And he doesn't expect to hold trade talks at the combine.
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If the Texans keep their top pick, they will have a chance to acquire one of college football's top edge rushers in Aidan Hutchinson (Michigan) and Kayvon Thibodeaux (Oregon).
But according to Mel Kiper's latest mock draft, the Texans will boost their offensive line with the No. 3 pick by selecting tackle Evan Neal from Alabama.
"This is an extremely tough pick to project before free agency because the Texans have a barren roster with needs at most every position," Kiper said. "If Houston is tearing down its roster even further, that could mean trading a few key veterans, such as tackle Laremy Tunsil and wide receiver Brandin Cooks, and trying to add more picks.
"That opens a hole on the left side for Neal, a physical blocker with great feet. I don't think the Texans could go wrong with high-upside pass-rusher Kayvon Thibodeaux, either, but they have to hit on the top guy on their board here."