Grading the Houston Texans' First-Round Selection of Jadeveon Clowney

By Nick Schaeflein
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The No. 1 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft was a very important one for the Houston Texans franchise. It was the first pick in the new Bill O’Brien era and a pick for a team currently riding a 14-game losing streak after having Super Bowl hopes not to long ago. The Texans had many different options that they could have gone with, and in the end they chose defensive end Jadeveon Clowney from South Carolina.

On the surface, Clowney was ultimately the smart and safe choice for Houston. He was arguably the best player on the board in this year’s crop of talent. Clowney has freakish talents, but the one true question mark is his mental approach and desire. Will he be a player who takes plays off? Will he become an off-field headache? Only time will tell for the Houston franchise.

On the field, it could become a great fit for the defense. Having Clowney on one side and J.J. Watt on the other could lead to nightmares for opposing quarterbacks. The Texans will face Robert Griffin III in Week 1 and Andrew Luck twice a year with two players who know how to get in the backfield and blow up plays. When the good Clowney shows up, he will certainly improve the defense down in Houston.

In the big picture, the pick of a defensive player first could pay off even more as the draft continues. The Texans will pick first again in round two with still the quarterback position needing to be addressed. The loss of Teddy Bridgewater hurts slightly, but Derek Carr is still on the board. Houston could also go with Marqise Lee as another skill player to go with Andre Johnson and DeAndre Hopkins or Carlos Hyde to replace Ben Tate behind Arian Foster in the backfield. Landing starters to begin the first two rounds will provide instant impacts for a team looking to get back to the playoffs.

For the Texans, picking Clowney first overall earns an A grade. It was the correct choice for the team, and it will provide immediate results on the field from not just that selection, but the others to follow as well. Houston is once again on the clock.

Nick Schaeflein is a Sports writer for Follow him on Twitter @ptchr2424 or add him to your network on Google.

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