Texans discuss intentions in upcoming NFL draft


HOUSTON – The general manager of the Houston Texans held his annual pre-draft press conference and true to form, he gave his annual vague answers to questions about the team’s intentions in the upcoming NFL draft, which will be held April 27-29 in Philadelphia.

He acknowledged that the team would add a quarterback, but did so without committing to using a draft pick on one.

“We currently have two quarterbacks on the roster,” Rick Smith said. “Our intentions are to have three when we get to camp.”

Tom Savage and Brandon Weeden are the two quarterbacks currently on the roster, and Savage is the current QB 1.

Smith said that he was comfortable with Savage as the starting quarterback for this offense.

“He’s proven he understands this offense. I think he’s proven he can play at a high level,” Smith said.

Savage started a pair of games last season for the Texans before suffering a concussion in Week 17, which cost him the remainder of the season.

Most experts expect the Texans to use an early draft pick on a quarterback, and the team has hosted several quarterbacks, including Clemson’s DeShaun Watson and Texas Tech’s Patrick Mahomes, for pre-draft interviews in Houston.

In citing specific position group, Smith indicated he and the scouting staff believe the draft class of safeties is a strong one. That could play into the team’s draft, considering they lost starting safety Quintin Demps to the Bears in free agency.

Smith also noted the staff feels as if the offensive line group in the draft is light on talent. The Texans offensive line has several question marks, with left tackle Duane Brown the only proven quality starter who is set to return to the same position.

The team is hopeful last year’s second-round pick, Nick Martin, will become the starting center, which he was slotted to be as a rookie, before an ankle injury during training camp shelved him for the entire season.

Right tackle Derek Newton is still recovering from multiple knee injuries he suffered last season in late October on the road at the Broncos.