Texans GM Caserio 'Focused On NFL Draft' - Not QB Watson

The Houston Texans general manager is focused on April's draft instead of the ongoing investigation.
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HOUSTON -- Houston Texans GM Nick Caserio is certainly having an eventful offseason. Within two months, the former New England Patriots executive saw star quarterback Deshaun Watson ask for a trade. He now is battling allegations of sexual assault and misconduct. 

This naturally changes the course of the Texans offseason, who are set to begin voluntary workouts on Monday. For Caserio, his attention though is turned away from Watson and more towards the NFL Draft come April 29. 

“I’m not going to get into hypotheticals or speculation,” Caserio said via Zoom call Friday at his press conference. “We’re going to do what’s best for the Texans and will control what we can control.”

Watson, who signed a four-year $156 million extension last September, demanded to be elsewhere following the hirings of Caserio and first-time head coach David Culley. Caserio stated during his opening press conference that the 25-year-old was the Texans starter. But ...

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When asked again if Watson could be moved before the draft, Caserio declined to comment. 

"I know Cal [McNair] and ownership put a letter out a few weeks ago just relative to the organizational stance, relative to where we are," Caserio said. "So, I don't have anything to add.It's a legal process. We're respectful of the legal process and where that is. So we're focused on today. We're focused on getting ready for the offseason program and getting ready for the draft." 

Houston’s attention moves forward to the two weeks ahead when on the clock. The Texans won't be picking until the No. 67 slot, meaning they must wait for talent to tumble down the draft board. 

Caserio could have plans on what to do with the team's first pick. When asked if Houston could look to move up or down, Caserio told reporters it'll be based on the asking price and the players location. 

Prior to the draft, multiple reports stated that Watson's value could go for as high as three first-round pick and several mid-round selections. Currently, there is no indication that the Pro Bowl passer would garner anything like that at the time. 

Watson is currently facing 22 civil suits accusing him of sexual harassment and assault. Both Watson and defense attorney, Rusty Hardin, deny the allegations.

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Houston might be forced to wait to move off Watson until 2022. The NFL is also investigating the Texans' starter based on the league's personal conduct policy. Should they intervene, Watson could be suspended for an extended period. 

Caserio cannot focus on the what ifs or the perhaps. His attention must turn to the players at hand and the ones they covet in the NFL Draft. 

Houston is entering a rebuild mode for next season and beyond. Caserio's thoughts could stay on moving Watson to help speed up the rebuild, but the immediate building blocks can be added when picking Friday and Saturday. 

The Texans currently have eight total picks in the NFL Draft.   

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