If the Houston Texans select a player like defensive end Jadeveon Clowney (South Carolina) with the No. 1 overall pick, they could look to the end of the first round for a quarterback.
The Texans moved on from Matt Schaub (Oakland Raiders) this offseason, and currently have Ryan Fitzpatrick as the most experienced quarterback on the roster. The need for quarterback is obvious, but the team will be looking for proper value.
New head coach Bill O’Brien comes to the Texans after leading Penn State as their head coach for the last two years. During his time with the Nittany Lions, O’Brien preferred big pocket passers. His two starters during that time were Matt McGloin (6’1” 207 pounds) and Christian Hackenberg (6’4” 220 pounds).
His offensive system at Penn State worked through these classic pocket passers. Those two combined for 44 touchdown passes over the 2012 and 2013 seasons.
O’Brien may be looking for another big pocket passer now that he’s with the Texans.
When looking at pocket passers available, there is one late first-round prospect who stands out—LSU quarterback Zach Mettenberger. If the Texans don’t add a guy like Blake Bortles (Central Florida) with the No. 1 pick, then trading back into the late first round for Mettenberger would make sense.
Mettenberger measures in at 6’5”, 225 pounds, and he sees the field well. This helps him easily scan from sideline-to-sideline for the open receiver.
He’s got one of the strongest arms in this draft class, and Mettenberger can make every throw required (with proper velocity) in the NFL. His arm strength also helps him fit passes into smaller passing windows. He can make throws other quarterbacks can’t—or won’t—because of his rocket arm.
In addition to size, Mettenberger has toughness. He will hang in the pocket until the last possible millisecond looking for a receiver. He exhausts his reads completely, and Mettenberger will challenge a defense vertically.
Mettenberger needs to work on passing with better touch. He is not that athletic (like most pocket passers), and his mechanics falter when asked to throw on the run.
NFL Films' Greg Cosell believes Mettenberger is the best prototypical pocket passer in this draft.
As stated in the previous slide, the fifth-year option may prompt teams to get back into the first round for a quarterback. The Texans have the 33rd overall pick, so the Broncos would only move back two picks.
Any player Denver has targeted at No. 31 could very well still be on the board when the 33rd pick comes up.