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Texans select OLB Adibi in fourth


Adibi led the Hokies' defense in tackles in 2007.

Virginia Tech linebacker Xavier Adibi will have good company on the Texans. Adibi, the team's fourth-round pick, will rejoin offensive tackle Duane Brown, whom the Texans selected 18th overall, in Houston.

"It's great," Adibi said. "Getting the call from the Houston Texans and going over there with one of my good friends that I came to college with in Duane Brown - I'm just very excited and can't wait to go out there and show everyone what I can do."

{QUOTE}Adibi (6-3, 229) started 40 games as a Hokie, recording 291 tackles (133 solos) and 11 sacks for minus 34 yards. He impressed the Texans with his ability to make plays on the ball and rush the passer.

"We are really excited about this pick," defensive coordinator Richard Smith said of Adibi. "He's a really productive linebacker and has really good athletic ability. We like his foot quickness and his change of direction."

Last season, Adibi earned All-ACC first-team honors after leading the team with a career-high 115 tackles, including three sacks and 12 tackles for loss. The linebacker also performed well at the NFL Scouting Combine and at his pro day, where he ran the 40-yard dash in 4.58 seconds.

"He has natural hip explosion and very good body control and balance," Smith said. "We like what we saw when we interviewed him down in Indianapolis."

The Texans were looking to add depth at outside linebacker after Charlie Anderson and Danny Clark signed with other teams during free agency. Adibi will compete for playing time at linebacker and could make an immediate impact on special teams.

"Before the draft, we only had six linebackers. You're supposed to have nine when you go into camp. I think it's exciting to add something new at that position," Smith said. "We have Demeco Ryans and Zac Diles from last year. And now we are going to add another athlete in Xavier in that role, as a young guy that has very good athletic ability but has got size."

Adibi is excited to learn from Ryans, who this year made his first trip to the Pro Bowl.

"I used to watch him all the time when he played at Alabama," Adibi said of Ryans. "He is an excellent linebacker; one of the up-and-coming linebackers in the league - one of the best, in my opinion, in the league. I just can't wait to go out there and study under him and learn everything I can."

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