Before Lovie Smith began assembling his coaching staff for the 2022 Texans, he was evaluating draft prospects. And he loves it.
The new Head Coach spent the time between the end of the regular season and now, breaking down video of college players, many of whom were practicing and playing in college all-star games like the Reese's Senior Bowl and the East-West Shrine Bowl.
"I love evaluating prospects," Smith said. "I watched all the Senior Bowl (practices). Modern technology: anything anybody does, you have it instantly, from practices and the games. So, just watching all the all-star games, and putting this together."
Smith joined the franchise a year ago as the Defensive Coordinator/Associate Head Coach. He jumped right into the draft prep process with the other coaches last year and was mightily impressed by the scouting and personnel department and General Manager Nick Caserio's vision for the future.
"We have a profile for every position," Smith said. "So we know exactly what we're looking for. That's what I was impressed with, with Nick so much, his first year. Was how we got on the same page with what we were looking for with Nick."
With just under three months until the first round begins on Thursday, April 28, Smith wouldn't tip his hand at who the Texans might target with the third-overall pick. After all, Caserio is on record as saying whether or not Houston stays at three is up for discussion, but the "best available" when it's time to select is the route he said the team will take and Smith wants "as many smart athletes" as possible on the roster.
"I don't know (right now) exactly what's the best available out there," Smith said. "But I just know if someone said 'Hey, we need a defensive lineman,' I wouldn't disagree with that. If someone said 'Hey Lovie, how about (some help) for our defensive backfield?', I wouldn't disagree with that. Some people are going to say, of course, the linebacker position."
Houston currently has nine picks in the NFL Draft, with four of those coming in the top 80.