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2022 NFL Mock Draft: Texans take a tackle

With the 3rd overall pick in the 2022 Bleeding Green Nation community mock draft, Houston Texans GM herbalonius selects ...

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 16 Alabama at Mississippi State Photo by Chris McDill/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Evan Neal, OT, Alabama

Okay, so we’re going with the idea that the Houston Texans actually build an actual real-life NFL football team for 2022 and beyond! This despite giving Lovie Smith the head coaching nod (less criticism about him specifically and much more about all the optics and chatter beforehand.) Who knows, maybe Lovie pulls off a Rich Bisaccia! And we’re also going what feels like works for the 2 most feasible scenarios for what the roster looks like with Davis Mills as the 2022 starter. Scenario #1 is the idea that together with offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton, and offensive line coach George Warhop, Lovie Smith both want to AND are able to keep Laremy Tunsil happy for at least one more year and have him be the left tackle for Davis Mills for his second year (Tunsil has cap numbers for 2022 and 2023 of about $17 million and $35 million respectively with only $16 million in dead money in 2023, so he’s a prime candidate for trade and restructure for another team.)

So, I have the Texans drafting Evan Neal from Alabama to be the starting right tackle. Learning on the job? Not the worst thing in the world. Both pass protection and run blocking should hopefully start at average and go up from there as Evan adjusts to the pro game. That’s what training camp is for, right?!

With Evan Neal the Texans have a right tackle to be a potential building block for the next ten years. And depending on his development before the 2023 season combined with Laremy Tunsil’s continued happiness on staying with the Texans, they may have a feasible candidate to switch to left tackle if Tunsil leaves after the 2022 season.

This does make me think about where Charlie Heck goes. From all accounts, it seems like he did a solid job at right tackle in 2021. Does he shift inside to right guard, with Tytus Howard slotting in at left guard and Justin Britt at center? He is 6’8, making the work inside the phone booth that much harder. He probably wasn’t visible enough to have significant trade value is my guess.

But what about Scenario #2? This scenario is based on the fact that in the elite/average offensive tackle-starved NFL, the single most valuable asset on the Houston Texans right now is Laremy Tunsil. And with the more-than-acceptable cap numbers Tunsil’s contract has, trading Laremy Tunsil would give the Texans even more assets to build out the rest of the roster for either Davis Mills or his replacement at quarterback.

In this situation drafting Evan Neal gives them a young, MUCH MUCH CHEAPER Laremy Tunsil replacement at left tackle, together with even more draft picks (presumably), AND cap space to sign other players if needed. And since Charlie Heck did a more than admirable job at right tackle in 2021, he gets the chance to continue that growth and play even better.

Poll

Do you approve of this pick?

This poll is closed

  • 72%
    Yes
    (354 votes)
  • 27%
    No
    (132 votes)
486 votes total Vote Now

2022 BGN Mock Draft Order

1) Jaguars (HellBentOnHurts): DE Aidan Hutchinson
2) Lions (Friendly Neighborhood Philly Fan): DE Travon Walker
3) Texans (herbalonius): OT Evan Neal
4) Jets (RideHighTide)
5) Giants (Brendanekstrom)
6) Panthers (Philliesandthebees)
7) Giants (Dr.MidnightGreen)
8) Falcons (Philly21)
9) Seahawks (chewy wellington)
10) Jets (tfrank9811)
11) Commanders (Negadelphia Norm)
12) Vikings (Kephas)
13) Texans (thebartender01)
14) Ravens (ablesser88)
15) Eagles (Fly Like An Eagle)
16) Saints (20Safety_Hazard)
17) Chargers (LBCeaglesFan!)
18) Eagles (Phoenix X Minimus)
19) Saints (Georgia_eagle)
20) Steelers (EagleDomiNation)
21) Patriots (Domonate)
22) Packers (Leo Bedio)
23) Cardinals (big DUB)
24) Cowboys (joey2arms)
25) Bills (ItownBallers22)
26) Titans (BrianMcE03)
27) Buccaneers (4133Dave)
28) Packers (The Player Formerly Known as Mousecop)
29) Chiefs (GreenGrampa)
30) Chiefs (Legend of Nick Foles)
31) Bengals (Thedeuce9)
32) Lions (Dtechman44)


Now it’s time for you to vote for who YOU think should be selected in the 2022 BGN Community Consensus Mock Draft.

Poll

Who should the Texans draft at No. 3 overall?

This poll is closed

  • 48%
    OT Evan Neal
    (155 votes)
  • 14%
    OT Ikem Ekwonu
    (46 votes)
  • 1%
    OT Charles Cross
    (5 votes)
  • 10%
    DE Travon Walker
    (35 votes)
  • 13%
    S Kyle Hamilton
    (42 votes)
  • 4%
    CB Ahmad Gardner
    (13 votes)
  • 5%
    QB Malik Willis
    (17 votes)
  • 2%
    QB Kenny Pickett
    (8 votes)
321 votes total Vote Now

1) Jaguars: DE Aidan Hutchinson
2) Lions: DE Kayvon Thibodeaux
3) Texans: