The Texans made a whirlwind of trades over the weekend, but the biggest one of all, may have been the one to secure former Miami Dolphin Laremy Tunsil.
A former first-round (13th overall) NFL Draft pick in 2016, Tunsil is just 25 years old but already a proven left tackle whose focus will be to protect Deshaun Watson’s blind side, among other things.
“I think that when you look at Laremy, yes he is an excellent pass protector, but there's so many other things he can do,” head coach Bill O’Brien said Monday. “He can run block, he's able to get his pads down, he works well with the guys next to him whether it's a tight end to his left or a guard to his right, he works very well with the guys next to him, he can pull out on screens.”
Tunsil began his career at left guard, starting 14 games there as a rookie in 2016 and just two at left tackle. In the last two seasons, he has started 30 games at left tackle. The fourth-year offensive lineman arrived in Houston on Sunday and promptly began meeting with the coaching staff, including offensive line coach Mike Devlin.
"He's a very smart player, he's a very instinctive player and he's played guard before," O'Brien said. "We're not going to line him up at guard unless we had to, but he's done that before, so he's got a versatile skillset. I think that everyone is excited about adding him to the team."
The Texans scouting department had done their research on Tunsil, dating as far back as his college days when Director of College Scouting James Liipfert was on staff with the New England Patriots.
“So, we have a lot of people, in addition to James, that are very familiar with him and we're excited about watching him on tape and what he can bring to our offense,” O’Brien said. “He's come in here, you can tell he's humble and hungry and he's looking forward to being a Texan."
Tunsil will wear No. 78 for the Texans.