The Houston Texans need a quarterback, but they want their quarterback.
If the Texans had the No. 1 overall pick in the 2023 NFL draft, they wouldn’t need to worry about missing out on Alabama’s Bryce Young. However, their 32-31 win over the Indianapolis Colts cost them the chance to have the first pick as the Chicago Bears possessed it thanks to their loss to the Minnesota Vikings in Week 18.
According to Luke Easterling from the Draft Wire, the Texans use the No. 12 overall pick — obtained via 2022 offseason trade with the Cleveland Browns — as part of a trade package with the No. 2 overall pick to move up to No. 1.
The Bears already have their franchise quarterback in Justin Fields, so they can auction this pick off to the highest bidder. They can also leverage division rivals against one another, and if they play their cards right, Chicago can take advantage of both teams’ desperation. Here, Houston gives up the No. 12 overall pick to jump up one spot and get the best passer in the class.
Houston still has five picks in the top-103 of the draft, including two third-round picks. The Texans still have adequate capital to find quality players.
The Texans use their No. 33 overall pick in Round 2 to select Georgia linebacker Nolan Smith, who would provide tremendous edge defense in DeMeco Ryans’ scheme.
At Nos. 65 and 73 overall the Texans pick LSU wideout Kayshon Boutte and USC DL Tuli Tuipulotu. Boutte would be a decent addition to Houston’s receiving corps while Tuipulotu would be another motor to have as part of the defensive line rotation.