The 2012 NFL Draft is just 23 days away.
Of the 27 NFL mock drafts, 22 have the Texans taking a wide receiver in the first round. Kendall Wright, Alshon Jeffery and Stephen Hill are names that have been mentioned. Of the other five mock drafts, two have the Texans taking an offensive tackle, while the others have the club taking an outside linebacker, a guard, and a nose tackle.
Out of those possibilities, the prospect that perhaps makes the most sense is a legit run-stuffing space-eating nose tackle above 300 pounds. While the choice of a nose tackle would not be needed to immediately replace Shaun Cody, but rather to be groomed for an eventual starter role.
Earl Mitchell doesn't appear to be the long-term answer at the position and neither is Cody. There are some talented nose tackles in this draft who are expected to be selected in the first two rounds.
The ideal choice would be Dontari Poe, who is coming off an excellent combine, and is likely to crack the Top 15 picks in the draft. Another possibility is Fletcher Cox, who appears certain to make the first round.
Alabama's John Chapman is 6'1, weighs 316 pounds, and is a true run-lane stuffer who demands double teams. He is projected as a second round pick but the Texans may take a strong look at him him if there are no quality wide receivers available in the first round.
A sleeper pick is Kheeston Randall. Projected as a sixth-round pick, Randall is a player the Texans can develop, as they have with other late-rounders.
At 6'5, and weighing 295 pounds, Randall knows how to use his hands well to move around linemen and is capable of opening lanes for the linebackers to make plays. Randall's weakness is ineffectiveness on passing downs.
But the Texans can perhaps work wonders with Randall, and groom him into a major contributor.24119