Words has broken that the Houston Texans are shopping their #1 pick in the NFL draft. Which teams could make that jump?
Thomas Dimitroff knows he has a team in the Atlanta Falcons that is at a crossroads. They have a solid core in place to make a title run but need another difference-maker on offense or defense to help get them over the hump. That is why the team should have interest in moving up. Jadeveon Clowney or Khalil Mack would make terrific additions on their rebuilding defense while Greg Robinson or Jake Matthews could offer that long missing blindside blocker Matt Ryan really has never had. Everything depends on what Dimitroff wants and how much he’s willing to pay for it.
Interestingly, when the news first surfaced that the Houston Texans were officially shopping the #1 pick, it was the Buffalo Bills that were tagged as one of the team that had serious interest in acquiring it. Given their commitment to E.J. Manuel it couldn’t have been with the intent of grabbing a quarterback, which means they are after one of two possibilities. Either they wish to pair Jadeveon Clowney with sack master Mario Williams, a frightening combination to think about. Or they hope to get Manuel some badly needed pass protection with one of the top offensive tackles. Buffalo did surrender 48 sacks in 2013.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Their lightning campaign in free agency has put the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in excellent position to be aggressive in the NFL draft if they wish to. Most of their top needs have been met from cornerback (Alterraun Verner) to tackle (Anthony Collins) and defensive end (Michael Johnson). One area they have not paid much attention to is wide receiver. After all, Vincent Jackson is 31-years old and #2 man Mike Williams is suffering through some off-the-field problems that make him a wild card. These situations could drive the Buccaneers to make a strong push for wide receiver Sammy Watkins, widely considered one of the elite players in the entire class.
For the Houston Texans the trade partner with the most to offer and the least amount of spaces to drop would be the Cleveland Browns at #4. They have five picks in the first three rounds including two first rounders ( they have #26 as well). Their need for a franchise quarterback is well-documented and getting the #1 pick would allow them to select the guy they want rather than risk taking a guy they could settle for. Sammy Watkins, Greg Robinson and even Jadeveon Clowney are all possibilities as well. That’s provided they are even interested in moving up of course.