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What The Texans Need: Regressing Not an Option

If there was ever a need to write a book on how to go from being a three-win team to a 10-win team the following season, the Houston Texans need to be the ones writing said book.

Led by first-year head coach DeMeco Ryans, Offensive Rookie of the Year C.J. Stroud, and Defensive Rookie of the Year Will Anderson Jr., Houston went from an afterthought to NFL betting lines darlings as fast as ever.

What The Texans Need: Regressing Not an Option
C.J. Stroud #7 of the Houston Texans/ Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images/AFP

Making it all the way to the AFC divisional round of the playoffs, falling to the Baltimore Ravens in said stage, the Texans showed they are done with being taken as a joke and are now ready to bring the fight to any and all doubters.

But what is it going to take for Houston to make 2024 another season full of “W’s” – especially as the Texans are early NFL lines favorites to win the AFC South once again?


NFL Draft: Defense Heavy the Way to Go

Even if taking one of the top wide receivers in the first round of the 2024 NFL Draft feels like it should be Houston’s main plan to help Stroud, I’ll just go ahead and say no.

Hell no.

The Texans can get receivers on Day 2 or even Day 3 of the draft and still probably land a steal. Instead, Houston should focus on loading up on defense first – either at the linebacker, cornerback, edge rusher or interior defensive lineman.

Afterward, going for wide receivers and offensive linemen needs to be key.

Take Clemson linebacker Jeremiah Trotter II, for example. His athletic prowesses allow him to be a massive dual-threat both anticipating passes and rushing passers. Trotter is the kind of player that would come in and make an impact right away for coach Ryans’ defense, especially having him paired up with Anderson as the team’s new defensive leader.

If it’s cornerback the team decides to go for instead of pass rusher, if Alabama’s Kool-Aid McKinstry is still around at the time of Houston’s pick, then it’s a no-brainer here.

If he’s not around, which could definitely happen, especially with how high different mock drafts in various NFL news outlets have put him, Washington star pass rusher Bralen Trice feels like a perfect alternative to use with the team’s first-round pick.

After that’s said and done, going for more help for the team’s secondary, as well as looking for one or two receivers and offensive line help should be the mission ahead.


Free Agency: With Money to Spend, Time to Bring Big Names

If I had to dish out an expert NFL prediction for the Texans next season, I’d say the future is looking ever so bright. At the same time, though, now that the league has seen what this team can do with Ryans and Stroud leading the pack, if Houston wishes to move up and be seriously taken as title contenders, big name veterans need to be brought into the team.

With a projected cap space of just over $74 million, bringing in a strong veteran for the team’s defensive line and a true WR1 should be essential this offseason.

If the Texans wish to really shake up the league, targeting a player like Super Bowl champion defensive tackle Chris Jones, as it’s been talked around in different NFL rumors outlets, would certainly do the trick.

Yes, snatching him away from the Kansas City Chiefs might prove to be a gargantuan feat, but in Houston’s favor, KC has been known to not have any real issues parting with superstars, like Tyreek Hill a couple of seasons ago. And plus, the money to make Jones a strong multi-million-dollar offer is there to be used.

For the WR1 position, this coming free agency market will be filled to the brim with talents looking for a new home. Let’s say, for example, the San Francisco 49ers, who are in some real deep cap space issues, decide to part ways with a player like Brandon Aiyuk.

Pairing players like Tank Dell and Nico Collins with a player like Aiyuk as WR1 could give Stroud a receiver corps that would automatically become the best in Houston’s division, and one of the best in the AFC.

Lastly, going for a strong veteran option to boost up Stroud’s offensive line should also be in Houston’s plans this FA period.

At the end of the day, that’s the good part about having money to spend, there will always be options of how to spend it wisely.


Outlook: If Last Season Was Fun, Wait For 2024!

How can any NFL betting odds fan not like what the future holds for Houston? The Texans have one of the best up-and-coming coaches in the league leading a crew of explosive young talents ready to show the league what’s up.

While all other teams in the AFC South look like they are closing to taking a step back instead of moving forward, the Texans look ready to give the AFC’s top title contenders a true run for their money.

So, again, as simply put as possible, if last season was fun, 2024 might just end up being twice the fun, or more.


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Questions Of The Day

How Many Times Have The Texans Won The Rookie Of The Year Award?

With C.J. Stroud and Will Anderson Jr. winning last season’s Offensive and Defensive Rookie of the Year honors, the Texans have now won the award four times.

What Positions Should The Texans Focus On Strengthening This Offseason?

Finding C.J. Stroud at least one new veteran weapon for his wide receiver corps, as well as boosting up the defense and secondary, needs to be Houston’s main areas to focus on strengthening this offseason.

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