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Texans sign first-round pick Brown


Tackle Duane Brown figures to be a big contributor for the Texans in 2008.

The Texans announced Friday that they have signed first-round draft pick tackle Duane Brown, the final Texans' draft choice to sign. Brown's signing means all Texans' rookies reported to camp in time for the first practice. This is the third consecutive year that general manager Rick Smith has executed deals allowing all of the Texans' draft picks to enter camp without missing a practice. This is the sixth time in seven years that the Texans have had all of their draft picks on the field for the first practice.

Brown (6-4, 308) was the 26th selection in the 2008 NFL Draft from Virginia Tech. He is part of the continuing effort by the Texans to address their interior line. He is the fifth consecutive first-round draft pick to be selected on the line, joining defensive tackle Amobi Okoye (2007, 10th overall), defensive end Mario Williams (2006, 1st overall), defensive tackle Travis Johnson (2005, 16th overall) and defensive end Jason Babin (2005, 27th overall) as Texans' first-round picks on the line of scrimmage.

At No. 26 overall, Brown was drafted earlier than any offensive lineman in Texans history. Guard Chester Pitts had been the highest-drafted Texans' lineman prior to this year. He was selected with the 50th overall pick in the second round in 2002.

Brown began his collegiate career at Virginia Tech as a tight end. During his freshman season, he saw action in 14 games, catching three passes for 64 yards and a touchdown. His first reception against Western Michigan was a 33-yard touchdown.

Following his freshman year, Brown was converted to an offensive tackle, where he would start the final 40 games of his college career at either right or left tackle. The Hokies finished with a 32-8 record, including two trips to the ACC Championship Game and winning the ACC crown as a senior.

Brown earned second-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference recognition during his junior and senior seasons in Blacksburg. He was awarded with the Offensive Lineman/End of the Year pick by the Richmond Touchdown Club during that same time span.

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