How will Louis Nix fit with the Houston Texans?
He'll be an impact player on day one; is that good enough for you?
Nix is a guy that the scouts from CBS Sports had rated as a first-round prospect, so getting him in the middle of the third round was an absolute steal. The knock on Nix that apparently caused him to slide was that he's only a two-down player. Maybe he'll come off the field when they go to the nickel package, however, if the guy dominates on first and second down who cares?
In Houston Nix joins Pro Bowl linebacker Brian Cushing, 2012 Defensive Player of the Year J.J. Watt, and first overall pick Jadeveon Clowney in the Texans front seven on defense. If Cushing remains healthy and Clowney and Nix both reach their potential, the Texans will have the best front seven in the entire league.
As the site State of the Texans points out, the 3-4 system Romeo Crennel runs is much more traditional than what Wade Phillips ran while he was the defensive coordinator for the Houston Texans. Phillips' system allowed his defensive lineman to freelance and rush the passer on occasion, while Crennel asks his defensive lineman to two-gap and plug up the line to keep the blockers off their linebackers.
I think Louis Nix is primarily a two-gap player obviously, but he can make a few plays when asked to one-gap and get up the field. As the Texans nose tackle he will be asked to two-gap on most plays, but Dane Brugler and Rob Rang from CBS Sports think Nix is capable of getting pressure by splitting defenders.
Built like a full-grown man with a large frame and strong muscle definition throughout his body. Nimble feet with the lateral quickness to explode in any direction and chase down the action in pursuit. Carries his weight so natural for a 340+ pounder, shifting his weight well with the agile footwork to quickly change directions.
Plays hard with a feisty motor. Applies quick pressure by splitting gaps, using a quick arm-over swim move and bull-rushing his opponent deep into the pocket. Has the hand strength and initial get-off momentum to bully blockers on their heels, showing leverage and active limbs. Keeps his eyes on the ball and shows the awareness to anticipate and track plays.
Mike Mayock of NFL Network believes that Louis Nix will be a great fit as the Texans nose tackle but also points out one of the concerns surrounding him.
Houston is looking for big, strong, physical playmakers. Nix is a prototypical 3-4 nose tackle. At 350 pounds, he's extremely stout. He should probably play at 330, because he can get tired and when he gets tired he loses the leverage battle.
Nolan Nawrocki of NFL.com also likes the fit for Nix as a nose tackle.
Outstanding size. Commands a double team and has two-gap ability. Good quickness off the snap. Has press strength and power to push blockers into the backfield. Shows disruptive ability when his battery is charged. Flashes an arm-over. Redirects well for a big man. Nice pursuit effort. Strong wrap tackler.
Bottom line—Louis Nix is a first-round rated player who will make an impact at a big need position; great pick.