CBS Sports mock has Texans drafting OL Ikem Ekwonu No. 3 overall

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The consensus in mock drafts is that Oregon defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux and Michigan defensive end Aidan Hutchinson will be gone by the time the Houston Texans pick at No. 3 overall in the 2022 NFL draft.

Mock drafts then divert at the No. 3 pick by having the Texans either address the secondary with safety Kyle Hamilton, cornerback Derek Stingley, or even fix the offensive line with Alabama tackle Evan Neal.

According to Ryan Wilson from CBS Sports, not only do the Texans miss out on the draft’s two dominant edge rushers, but they also pass on fixing the secondary and go straight to the offensive line with the selection of North Carolina State’s Ikem Ekwonu.

Davis Mills played some pretty good football down the stretch, and it sure seems like the team will move forward with him, at least for another season. (Of course, this all depends on the next coach but we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it.) And if that’s the plan, it seems reasonable to protect him. Ekwonu, meanwhile, is one of our favorite players in this draft class. There’s talk that he may have to move inside to guard but when you watch him play, he’s perfectly suited to be a dominant tackle, which is exactly what Houston needs.

Taking Ekwonu would be the move Houston would make after the trading of Laremy Tunsil. It isn’t a move that the Texans would make if they were still stacked at their bookend positions. 2022 figures to be a pivotal year for Tytus Howard, who has shown that he can move between tackle and guard. Howard played his best football on the outside, and he figures to man one of the tackle spots next season.

The downside to getting Ekwonu is his relative youth along with where he would be taken in the top-5. At that high of a draft spot, Houston needs an immediately impact player, not someone who needs a little time to develop.