The Texans’ first-round pick helped acquire Deshaun Watson in 2017, boosting the grade, but their second-rounder was used to unload Brock Osweiler’s onerous contract, which hurts. GM Brian Gaine still managed to effectively marry value and need despite limited resources. Reid and Rankin could start early, while Akins, Coutee and Ejiofor should rotate in from Day 1.
Duke Ejiofor slid after having labrum surgery in February, but pass-rush ability is exceedingly hard to find late in the draft, and he certainly has it. The Houston native is a work in progress against the run, but he could be a double-figure sack guy at the next level.
Justin Reid is a player some thought could sneak into Round 1. Reid dazzled at the combine (4.40 40 yards, 10-8 broad jump). With his combination of size and movement skills, he could be a star in a Texans scheme that asks a lot of its safeties.