Though Aaron Williams name has been tossed around as a potential first round candidate, it's not at all inconceivable to see him drop into the low 40s before being picked. I'm sure Williams and the Texans organization would be thrilled if things shook out this way. Many thanks to jd5757 for the solid pick and writeup. Next up: the Minnesota Vikings, represented by Steel in FL. - Michael B. -
So, I originally had myself going with a different corner with this pick, but then I looked up and down our mock again, and I realized something startling. Aaron Williams is NOT off the board!
Let's face it, folks. Houston has a terrible secondary. A terrible, terrible secondary. Their offense can put up points in bunches, and if their pass rush can get to a quarterback (see: week one vs the Colts), they stand a ghost of a chance. However, if that isn't the case, as it could tend to be last season, they would get burned. Now one could argue that maybe a defensive end for the other side of Mario Williams would help. Kinda going with the Steelers perspective of hoping that a good pass rush can make up for having an average secondary.
But here's the problem: as I stated before, the Texans have a horrid secondary. So I don't care if your defensive front seven is Demarcus Ware, James Harrison, Lamarr Woodley, Terrell Suggs, Mario Williams, Patrick Willis, and a rookie Jevon Kearse; if they don't get to the quarterback (in that strangely unlikely-yet-wholly possible scenario), a secondary like Houston's is going to get burned. So with him not being off the board yet, I have to go with the blatantly obvious choice of Aaron Williams from Texas.
Maryrose had a great write-up as to why the Steelers should take Williams, and it actually finally sold me on him. I'd be great with us taking him (yes, even putting aside my obsession with Dowling). However, this isn't me drafting for the Steelers. This is me drafting for the Texans. And if the Texans want to draft for need, and you know, finally make good on the fact that the Texans seem to be everyone's darkhorse candidate for a decent playoff run every year, they're gonna take a corner. Williams is simply the best available for their needs.
People criticize him for being a tweener style of player. But really, for a team like Houston, in what exact way is that bad? He could play either safety or corner, as we've all read on pretty much every website in the football universe, and he did at Texas. The Texans could use help at either position, and why not draft a player from in-state? On top of having a top-flight player, they're already getting a hometown favorite, so it's a win-win situation for everyone.
It's tough to really do another analysis because maryrose did such a fantastic one, but I'll give it a shot. I know we've all seen his stats, but I may as well go over them again for the sake of posterity. He ran a 4.44 40 according to official stats, so he's not the fastest dude on the field, but he can play surprisingly well in man coverage. Also, if the Texans decide to play him at safety, this isn't as big of a problem, anyway. He also has prototypical size for a safety, which doesn't hurt their reasoning for doing so. But there's also the fact that you have to look at the receivers in Houston's division. Indy doesn't really have deep threats (unless you count Reggie Wayne, but he's getting up their in years and not as fast as he once was) so much as possession guys. And really, Indy is the team to beat in that division, and for a possession receiver going over the middle, it's gonna be pretty tough when someone who can lower the lumber the way that Williams can is lurking (again, if he were a safety). Tennessee doesn't have great receivers, and they also have no quarterback at all. They have Chris Johnson. Yet again, here's where Williams can come in, because he is pretty damned impressive in run support. Dude just loves to hit. Then there's Jacksonville. I don't really think anything else needs to be said about that. So he's playing in a division where you don't need someone to run with a speed guy all the way down the field (unless one of those teams drafts a burner, which is possible).
The more I think about it, the more I think he might make a better safety in Houston's system, as opposed to a corner as he would be in our system. He's gonna make people think twice about going over the middle. He's going to stop the two teams in the division that can only run and can't pass at all if he's able to step up into the box and help out. And if he has to play center field periodically, there's the fact that he can close surprisingly quickly, and can jump 38 inches vertically, so he can potentially pull off some Troy-esque leaping picks.
All in all, given the way this mock has gone, I think Houston would be best served by taking Aaron Williams.
BTSC 2011 Community Mock Draft Selections:
- Carolina Panthers -- Cam Newton, QB, Auburn
- Denver Broncos -- Marcell Dareus, DT, Alabama
- Buffalo Bills -- Von Miller, LB, Texas A&M
- Cincinnati Bengals -- Da'Quan Bowers, DE, Clemson
- Arizona Cardinals -- Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU
- Cleveland Browns --
'The Snow Cone Machine'A.J. Green, WR, Georgia
- San Francisco 49ers -- Blaine Gabbert, QB, Missouri
- Tennessee Titans -- Nick Fairley, DT, Auburn
- Dallas Cowboys -- Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska
- Washington Redskins -- Robert Quinn, DE/OLB, North Carolina
- Houston Texans -- Aldon Smith, DE/OLB, Missouri
- Minnesota Vikings -- Tyron Smith, OT, USC
- Detroit Lions -- JJ Watt, DE, Wisconsin
- St. Louis Rams -- Julio Jones, WR, Alabama
- Miami Dolphons -- Mark Ingram, RB, Alabama
- Jacksonville Jaguars -- Brooks Reed , DE, Arizona
- New England Patriots -- Gabe Carimi, OT, Wisconsin
- San Diego Chargers -- Ryan Kerrigan, DE/OLB, Purdue
- New York Giants -- Akeem Ayers, LB, UCLA
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- Anthony Castonzo, OT, Boston College
- Kansas City Chiefs -- Martez Wilson, LB, Illinois
- Indianapolis Colts -- Cameron Jordan, DL, California
- Philadelphia Eagles -- Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado
- New Orleans Saints -- Justin Houston, DE/OLB, Georgia
- Seattle Seahawks -- Jake Locker, QB, Washington
- Baltimore Ravens -- Torrey Smith, WR, Maryland
- Atlanta Falcons -- Adrian Clayborn, DE, Iowa
- New England Patriots -- Mike Pouncey, OG, Florida
- Chicago Bears --Derek Sherrod, OT, Mississippi State
- New York Jets -- Muhammad Wilkerson, DT, Temple
- Pittsburgh Steelers -- Nate Solder, OT, Colorado
- Green Bay Packers -- Phil Taylor, DT, Baylor
- New England Patriots -- Cameron Hayward, DE, Ohio State (33rd overall)
- Buffalo Bills -- Kyle Rudolph, TE, Notre Dame (34th overall)
- Cincinnati Bengals -- Christian Ponder, QB, Florida State (35th overall)
- Denver Broncos -- Mikel LeShoure, RB, Illinois (36th overall)
- Cleveland Browns -- Corey Liuget, DT, Illinois (37th overall)
- Arizona Cardinals -- Colin Kaepernick, QB, Nevada (38th overall)
- Tennessee Titans -- Andy Dalton, QB, Texas Christian (39th overall)
- Dallas Cowboys -- Danny Watkins, OG, Baylor (40th overall)
- Washington Redskins -- Jonathan Baldwin, WR, Pittsburgh (41st overall)