Former Texans Pro Bowler Wade Smith's Top OL Choices For Texans Draft

April 12, 2019 - 4:22 pm

Houston (SPORTSRADIO 610) - Former Houston Texans offensive lineman Wade Smith joined MaD Radio and discussed who his top choices at offensive line are for the Texans in the coming NFL Draft. Smith outlined several options that the Texans might choose from with the 23rd overall pick. His favorite possibility may not be available when it comes to being as low as the Texans are in the first round.

"The first guy that I want to mention is Jawaan Taylor," Wade said. "He checks every box, so he definitely will not be there at number 23. He's a top ten pick."

"The guys that potentially would be there at 23 that you definitely need to take as soon as they're on the board, you've got; Jonah Williams, Andre Dillard, Cody Ford, who is kind of a sleeper, in my opinion, that would be really good value at that pick. Those are the guys that I would really look to try to pick up if I'm the Texans."

Jonah Williams is a junior tackle from Alabama. He earned his starting roll since he was freshman, and was a first-team All-American this past season. Williams began his career at right tackle, but moved to left tackle after Cam Robinson set off for the NFL.

"Jonah Williams doesn't check the boxes as far as his arm length and little measurables like that, but when you talk about a guy that when you watch on film you love everything you see about him. He gets it. He's a smart football player, you can tell," Smith said. "I've seen Jonah Williams play against top flight competition day in and day out, and he does very, very well. He's a football player."

Andre Dillard is a senior left tackle from Washington State. He was first-team All-PAC-12 his senior year and also third-team All-American. Dillard has not missed a game since becoming the starter his sophomore year.

"I think you're stealing if you can get Andre Dillard at 23. He's probably the best athlete in the draft," Wade said. "When you're comparing Andre Dillard to Jonah Williams, that's a tough comparison to make because you see Jonah Williams doing things that translate more to the NFL game in the run-game than you see out of Andre Dillard," Smith said. "But Andre Dillard does such a great job against all types of pass rushers... His footwork is immaculate."

"If I had to choose between those two, I would take Andre Dillard just because I personally like a guy that is really athletic, that has a bunch of pass protection reps... You can work on somebody and make them a better run blocker, as opposed to taking somebody that's a good run blocker and making him into a better pass protector. It's a little bit harder to do the other way."

Cody Ford is a junior right tackle from Oklahoma. He started his career as a guard, but moved to tackle to fill needs after teammates left for the NFL. Ford earned first-team All-Big 12 his senior year, along with third-team All-American.

"I wouldn't try to get a guy that's played always on the right side, and then try to move him to the left in the NFL. So if you're drafting Cody Ford, you're not drafting your left tackle of the future, I think you're drafting your right tackle of the future. I'm okay with that because you need to get guys that are foundational pieces on this offensive line," Wade said."He's not the greatest athlete, and that's why you don't want to put him on the left side, in my opinon. He's got good enough feet, he's got definitley the right tempermant to play right tackle in the NFL, he's played at a high level for an extended period of time, I just like his game overall, so I think he fits well with the Texans at right tackle."