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USA Today Sports Media Group
USA Today Sports Media Group
John Crumpler

Why the Alabama pro day matters to the Texans

Houston Texans general manager Nick Caserio spent two picks within the first two days of the 2022 NFL draft on Alabama players, taking receiver John Metchie and linebacker Christian Harris.

It would be no surprise if some of the current Crimson Tide prospects rank high on their board once again, especially as quarterback Bryce Young and defensive end Will Anderson respectively are two of the favorite players to go second overall.

However, March 23’s event in Tuscaloosa wasn’t just a showcase between Young and Anderson; safeties Brian Branch & Jordan Battle, linebacker Henry To’o To’o and running back Jahmyr Gibbs had the opportunity to demonstrate their effectiveness at the next level.

Is there anything Texans fans can learn from the Alabama pro day? After all, the Texans brass skipped the Ohio State pro day where C.J. Stroud and Jaxon Smith-Njigba were two of the top prospects.

Even Caserio told “Payne & Pendergast” on Sports Radio 610 [KILT-AM] on March 20 that he doesn’t find pro days to be informative due to the scripted, rehearsed nature of the events.

Obviously that did not change for the Texans as Caserio stayed in Clutch City for the Houston Cougars’ pro day on March 23, same day as Alabama’s.

From a Young perspective, all eyes nationally were on the Carolina Panthers, who had ownership, coach Frank Reich, general manager Scott Fitterer, and most of the offensive staff taking the top quarterback prospect out to dinner Wednesday night along with being in attendance on pro day. It is reminiscent of how the Panthers handled the Ohio State pro day.

Young did not throw at the NFL combine, electing to do so at his pro day. Nevertheless his results will be compared side by side with Stroud and Florida’s Anthony Richardson as if the trio had gone through the same drills at Lucas Oil Stadium earlier this month.

Whoever the Panthers select will have a downstream ripple effect on the Texans, which may be why the Texans brought in Will Anderson for a visit.

Still the consensus around the league has become that Houston will select whatever quarterback between Stroud and Young that Carolina opts to pass on.

Could a Carolina infatuation open the door for Will Anderson at No. 2 overall? Could the visit the past 48 hours ultimately solidify Stroud as the favorite over Young?

Since the Panther traded with the Chicago Bears for No. 1 overall, that’s not up for Houston to decide.

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