As the all-important 2018 NFL Draft approaches for the Houston Texans, looking at which prospects will benefit the team in the near future is necessary. One of these very prospects is University of Pittsburgh defensive back Jordan Whitehead, who’s been projected in mock drafts to be taken by the Texans with one of their third or fourth round picks.
In 2015, Whitehead played all 13 games as a true freshman at the University of Pittsburgh and was one of the best safeties in the nation. During this season, Whitehead had 110 tackles and one interception; both were slightly less than his totals, 125 touchdowns and 2 interceptions, over the next two seasons.
— ACC Digital Network (@theACCDN) October 21, 2017
After this tremendous season, Whitehead was ACC Rookie of the Year, Third-Team All-ACC, ACC Consensus Freshman All-American, and ACC Defensive Rookie of the Year. Whitehead continued rolling in 2016, getting put on Second-Team All-ACC after a season with 65 tackles. And after another stellar junior season in 2017, Whitehead decided to declare for the NFL Draft.
According to the reports, Whitehead is known for his superb play recognition and is rarely being fooled by the opposing offense. Furthermore, Whitehead is known for being an efficient man coverage defender with his tremendous quickness. This man coverage success occurs despite being on the smaller side at 5’11” and 190 pounds.
The Texans could easily draft Whitehead in the third or fourth round, who would be joining a struggling Texans secondary. One of the best parts about Whitehead is his versatility, as he’ll be able to play his natural position of safety and shift to corner because of his man coverage skills.
One concern that may come with Whitehead is his off the field issues. To begin his junior season, Pittsburgh coach Pat Narduzzi suspended Whitehead and defensive end Rori Blair for violation of team policies. Although it seems like a minor issue, this suspension could bring Whitehead down draft boards.
Overall, Whitehead could be a much needed addition to a Texans secondary that is currently depraved of talent. The University of Pittsburgh product could be just what the Texans need to make their secondary great again.