Nick Caserio began his pre-Draft press conference with a "tip of the cap" to the Texans scouting staff.
The General Manager met with the media Thursday inside NRG Stadium, and singled out on a first-name and nickname basis almost everyone from the college and pro personnel staffs for their tireless work in evaluating college prospects. The NFL Draft begins next Thursday in Las Vegas, and the Texans have 11 picks in this year’s edition, including the third and thirteenth overall.
Caserio will make the final call on who becomes a Texan next week, but in addition to singling out the scouts' efforts, he also said the coaches' opinions on prospects are important as well.
"We're trying to improve our football team, we're trying to continue to build our football team, and the input of our coaching staff is a huge part of it," Caserio said. "I'd be ignorant not to take the input of our coaches."
While the scouts are evaluating talent year-round, the coaches come into the mix shortly after the season ends. Caserio said each coach is given "a number of players to evaluate", and those subsequent evaluations add another layer of perspective to the Texans' ultimate decision. It's valuable, according to Caserio, that Head Coach Lovie Smith and many of his assistants have been around the block a time or two with regards to the Draft.
"We have a pretty experienced staff, so they've seen a lot of players, they've evaluated a lot of players, so they're going to have input," Caserio said. "Ultimately, I'm going to have to make the decision, but it's going to be done in concert with the group of people."
This is the second Draft for Caserio as the Texans General Manager, and it'll be the 12th Draft for Smith as an NFL Head Coach.
On Thursday night, the franchise will host a free Draft Party for fans in Houston at Miller Outdoor Theatre.
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