Texans still open to trading top pick in draft
MAY 02, 2014 2:44p ET
Houston Texans general manager Rick Smith knows who he wants to take with the No. 1 overall pick in the NFL Draft, but he and the team still aren't letting anyone in on who they are planning to take Thursday night.
"If we take the first pick, we know who we want," Smith said during his pre-draft news conference Thursday. "It's interesting to me that it's a big deal that we know our board, and all of a sudden we know who we want. That's our job. I think we ought to know that."
The question is still "if" Houston keeps the top pick. Smith and the Texans are still willing to make a trade with another team, if the right situation should occur.
"We're open to moving out of the first pick if, in fact, there's an opportunity to do so, and if we think it's in the best interest of the organization," Smith said. "There's a bunch of options out (there), and what I can tell you is that we're going to do everything we can to increase the talent on this team."
According to some reports, the Falcons are interested in trading for the first pick. Currently Atlanta is sitting with the sixth overall pick but it isn't known what the Texans are expecting as compensation if such a trade should occur.
"What happens (next week) is you're running those types of scenarios as well as trying to asses as best you can what you think will happen during the draft, which kind of helps you determine how far you may want to move, if you want to move," Smith said. "Other players that you're interested in and where they might be picked."
While the team's greatest need is at the quarterback position, former South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney is the favorite to go first in the draft if the Texans do indeed keep the pick. If Houston does make a trade, quarterbacks Johnny Manziel or Blake Bortles and even former Buffalo outside linebacker Kahlil Mack could land with the team, depending on how far it falls as a result of a swap.
"Obviously, quarterback is a position we've done a lot of study on. I always like impact players - guys that make plays either with the football in their hands offensively, or how make plays on the ball defensively. We'll certainly look to add impact players that way as well," Smith said. " We want to be a bigger, faster, stronger team. And there are two positions that I never think you can have too many of: corners and (offensive) tackles."
While Smith said he knows who he wants to take with the first pick, he isn't taking a break from evaluating the top talents that will be available.
"We'll continue to talk, and there's still a lot of information that can be obtained in a week's time. We have to remain open to that," Smith said. "We've done a nice job of being thorough with our process. I think we know as much as we need to know about these prospects, but if there is information that we learn over the next few days that alter those decisions, then we certainly reserve the right to do so."
This will be the eighth draft Smith will oversee as the Texans general manager, but is the first time the team has held the No. 1 overall pick during his tenure in Houston. The Texans will have 11 picks entering the draft in what is expected to be the deepest pool of talent in the decade.
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