HOUSTON – There are expectations, and then there’s the reality. Somewhere in the middle is where it is Houston Texans’ the draft class enters the minikamp rookie.
Nine potential clients have been selected by the CEO of Texas Nick Caserio during the 2022 draft, and another 10 were signed as unrefined free agents. The start of training will give Houston an early indication of where the prospects are among veterans in terms of athletics and aid.
Caserio, however, looks at the bigger picture.
“Trying to determine what role a rookie will play when it enters a building is ridiculous because they weren’t even here,” Caserio said Monday at the annual Texas Golf Tournament. “We have to start from the beginning when you come into the building, learn from the people in the building who will actually help you become a better professional and player and not worry about things you can’t control.”
Derek Stingley Jr.
Kenyon Green of Texas A&M
Baylor’s Jalen Pitre
The Texans in the early draft are choosing LSU backback Derek Stingley Jr. and Texas A&M offensive line Kenyon Green there are probably two candidates the fans hope will shine at the door. Last season, Houston allowed a total of 44 bags and struggled to find consistency in the rush attack.
Although the Texans finished in the top 10 in the take-away selection under current coach Lovie Smith, they finished 23rd in aisle coverage. Smith has made this off-season a priority to address secondary issues, adding veterans MJ Stewart and Steven Nelson to the free agency, while in the second round he chose Stingley and Baylor for security Jalen Pitre.
“If you go back to my comments I gave, I didn’t think we were good enough in the background,” Smith said Monday. “To really take it one step further, the backbacks were one of those positions I was talking about. I think we solved that in a free agency … we’re better now.”
Scroll to Continue
Smith also works under the impression of first maturity, not stock sketches. If a player does not adjust to NFL speed accordingly, he will continue to work in practice before entering the field.
This could be the case with several young defensive perspectives. Alabama linebacker Christian Harris has played in positions for just three seasons and has never worked in a 4-3 defensive appearance. Pitre often moved under the leadership of first Matt Rhule and later Dave Aranda as a hybrid defender.
In the attack, the Texans are hoping that at some point this season, slot receiver John Metchie III will return because of his consistency in Alabama. The 6-meter pass catcher suffered a torn ACL in a SEC Championship game in December after leading the Crimson Tide with 96 receptions during the regular season.
John Metchie III. from Alabama
Dameon Pierce of Florida
Christian Harris of Alabama
Metchie said after his selection that he should be ready to practice on the field starting in July, but the final verdict will be made by the medical and coaching staff of the Texans. As for those made on day 3, both Caserio and Smith could see them as long-term projects rather than first-day collaborators.
“It’s disrespectful to other players in the league when you start comparing yourself to players who have been around for four, five, six years, and honestly, you haven’t done anything,” Caserio said. “The focus is on one job, it’s on getting better and learning on the program and understanding the people in our building and here to make them better professionals.”
The Texas rookie minicamp will begin Friday at NRG Stadium and end on Sunday, May 15th.