Every single offseason, Texans fans beg and cry for the team to draft a huge, space-eating nose tackle in one of the early rounds. And every single year, they're left disappointed.
But, alas, the answer to the nose tackle problem might not be far away. In fact, it might be on the roster right now. Ladies and gentlemen, Earl Mitchell could be the first nose tackle in years to make an actual impact on the field for the Texans' defense.
For years, Mitchell has toiled behind Shaun Cody as the backup nose tackle. He played often due to a frequent nose tackle rotation, but he was never granted an opportunity to truly establish himself as a play-maker.
Mitchell will have every opportunity this season, as the departure of Cody has vaulted him into the starting lineup.
Mitchell is poised to do big things for the Texans' defense this season. And while he is not monstrously big, he does fit Wade Phillips' mold of smaller, quicker nose tackles.
Mitchell is extremely athletic, and his quick feet allow him to burst through slower offensive linemen into the backfield. If Mitchell can establish some go-to pass-rushing moves, he could become a danger to opposing defenses.
His stock has never looked so promising. Buy now.