Houston Texans Went From Nearly Not Drafting CJ Stroud To Taking Him AND His Suggested Target In The NFL Draft

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The Houston Texans selected Ohio State quarterback CJ Stroud second overall in the NFL Draft. Many believe that was the plan all along and everything else was a smokescreen.

However, OutKick spoke to a source that said Stroud’s visit to Houston was “terrible.” The coaching staff and front office were not sold on him, which is why so many reports came out saying they might try to trade the pick or take a defensive player.

It seems as though the ownership group possibly stepped in and wanted Stroud. That makes sense. The overall NFL community was high on Stroud and the team needed a quarterback and face of the franchise.

Houston did ultimately shock the football world when they not only drafted Stroud, but traded up to #3 overall to also select Alabama defender Will Anderson.

They selected Penn State center Juice Scruggs in the second round. Then, they picked University of Houston wide receiver Nathaniel “Tank” Dell in the third.

The Houston Texans not only took CJ Stroud in the NFL Draft, but later picked his suggested wide receiver prospect, Nathaniel "Tank" Dell.
The Houston Texans not only took CJ Stroud in the NFL Draft, but later picked his suggested wide receiver prospect, Nathaniel “Tank” Dell. (Photo by Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Having attended the University of Houston, it made sense the team would be comfortable with Dell. However, Dell says that CJ Stroud had a hand in selecting him.

The two connected after the scouting combine, according to Dell, and Stroud was very complimentary of the wide receiver.

So much so, in fact, that Stroud told the Houston Texans to draft Dell after they picked the quarterback.

“After he got drafted … I told [Stroud] ‘tell them to come get me,'” Dell said.

“He said, ‘I got you, trust me.’ The next day … he FaceTimed me out of nowhere … and he was like ‘I told them I want you.'”

The rest, as they say, is history.

Houston Texans go from possibly passing on CJ Stroud to taking him and one of his favorite receiver prospects

This is a fascinating turn of events for the Houston Texans. I truly believe they had their doubts about Stroud before ultimately selecting him.

But once they did, they appear to have bought in. Taking a receiver that Stroud wanted to help him feel more comfortable entering his rookie season is an indication that they are going to help him succeed.

Kudos to new head coach DeMeco Ryans. If he really wasn’t sure about Stroud but had his hand forced from above, then attempting to work with what he’s got is the mark of a strong coach.

Obviously, the performance on the field matters most.

But for Ryans, earning the trust of your players by supporting them is a big first step for a first-year coach.

Follow Dan Zaksheske on Twitter: @RealDanZak

Written by Dan Zaksheske

Dan began his sports media career at ESPN, where he survived for nearly a decade. Once the Stockholm Syndrome cleared, he made his way to Outkick. He is secure enough in his masculinity to admit he is a cat-enthusiast with three cats, one of which is named “Brady” because his wife wishes she were married to Tom instead of him.

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