So, we've already documented the fall of Pitt quarterback Tom Savage in the NFL Draft. Teams scoffed at the notion of him being a first-round pick and he fell to Friday. That wasn't too much of a surprise but not being selected on Friday certainly was. Savage then had to wait through much of the fourth round to be taken by the Houston Texans.
The Texans, who needed a quarterback, had targeted Savage before the draft. Head coach Bill O'Brien was said to be pretty high on him, actually. So when their second-round pick came up, Savage's name was one that seemed like a possibility. Instead, though, Houston went with UCLA guard Xavier Su'a-Filo. The Texans passed on Savage again in the third round when the quarterback was still available for Iowa tight end CJ Fiedorowicz. Any thoughts of the Texans truly wanting him seemed to fly out the window after they traded back into the third round, only to pass on him yet again by taking Notre Dame's Louis Nix.
Getting Nix that far down was a significant steal by most accounts, so one can hardly blame Houston. But after they'd went in another direction numerous times, it became apparent that they didn't value Savage as highly as many of the projections did.
By some stroke of fortune, Savage was still on the board in the fourth round and this time, Houston didn't pass.
So here's what we know - the Texans needed a quarterback after the job that Matt Schaub did last year. However, they didn't see the value there in the second, or even third rounds, when it came to another quarterback. They had numerous chances to take Savage, or even guys like Derek Carr or Jimmy Garoppolo in the second round.
It's not like they didn't want Savage - they didn't want any available quarterback, that high, really. After Blake Bortles, Johnny Manziel, and Teddy Bridgewater were predictably gone, Houston wasn't all that impressed with what was left over. They liked guys such as Savage, but they were far from enamored by him.
Houston played this draft pretty perfectly in terms of getting the quarterback they wanted when you really think about it. They coveted Savage but figured they could get him (or someone like him) later on. Instead of burning the top overall pick on a quarterback or what essentially amounted to a first-round pick on Savage with their first selection in the second round, they scored arguably the top defensive player and the top offensive guard in the draft. Instead of using a third round pick on a quarterback, they went with Nix and tight end Fiedorowicz - two of the highest rated players at their position.
We can argue that the Texans didn't land the impact guy at quarterback that they wanted. However, they weren't going to get a player like that without trading up in the first round, trading down from the top overall pick, or selecting one over Jadeveon Clowney. When it comes down to it, the Texans got their quarterback without giving up the farm (or, in essence, anything) for him. Not only did they not give up anything to get him, but they landed guys that should be able to help right away as well.
I wrote earlier this week that I didn't think Savage was a first-round pick because he was comparable to guys that could have been had in later rounds. It seems that Houston felt the same way.
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