With the Texans offensive line being one of the worst in football, general manager Brian Gaine will have to look towards the draft to remedy the situation. One of the players that could be a major contributor next season is Tyrell Crosby, an offensive tackle out of the University of Oregon.
In his senior season with the Ducks, Crosby was named third-team All-America by College Sports Madness and was a honorable mention All-America by both SB Nation and CollegeFootballNews. He was also awarded the Morris Trophy as the Pac-12 Offensive Lineman of the Year, received first-team All-Pac-12 Conference honors, and was on the Pro Football Focus first-team All-Pac-12 Conference.
During this outstanding senior season, Crosby did not allow a quarterback sack or hit and only gave up three hurries according to Pro Football Focus. He was also an integral part in Oregon’s 3,263 yard rushing season, which included a 251.0 rushing yards per game clip ranking 12th in the FBS.
This led to Crosby being elected to the 2018 senior bowl, where he continued to increase his draft stock and raise some eyebrows for the North team. Luckily for Crosby, Texans head coach Bill O’Brien was coaching the opposing South team and immediately became interested in the 6’5″, 325 pound lineman.
— Jennifer Lee Chan (@jenniferleechan) January 24, 2018
And why wouldn’t O’Brien be interested? Crosby has the strength, size, length, and ability to finish blocks that could lead to him being an efficient run blocker, which would be a much needed help to a Texans team that is currently fourteenth in rushing. He is also a really good pass blocker, as he engulfs defenders once he has them in his grasp and is able to recover from quick rushers by using his length. Crosby also has sound technique and provides good pocket protection, which will help lower the league-high 225 pressures that the Texans offensive line allowed last season.
One weakness in Crosby’s game is his struggle with speedy edge rushers due to his lack of quickness and average body control. But luckily for Crosby, his length can often compensate for his lack of initial speed and will help him in the NFL while he adjusts to pro-level opposing rushers.
While there are other options in the draft like JaMarco Jones, and the Texans could also explore free agency and attempt to sign Andrew Norwell or John Sullivan, Crosby is a first-round prospect if it weren’t for a gruesome foot injury he suffered his junior year. This talent could lead to Crosby making an amazing return on investment as a possible third round pick for the Texans, and would help protect franchise quarterback Deshaun Watson for many years to come.