2022 NFL Draft: Grades for Derek Stingley Jr. and Every Other Houston Texans Pick

What didn’t the Houston Texans need heading into the 2022 NFL Draft

Davis Mills probably isn’t the long-term option at quarterback with Deshaun Watson off to the Cleveland Browns, though the 2021 third-rounder might at least enjoy enough leeway to make finding another signal-caller a lesser priority. Beyond that, Houston could have used another option at running back alongside Marlon Mack (got it later in the draft), reliable wide receivers (ditto), help along the interior of the offensive line (check), and assistance at basically every spot on defense (major progress).

Fortunately for the AFC South residents, they entered the draft with 11 total picks, five of which came in the top 80. The draft equity to add quite a few immediate contributors was here, though head coach Lovie Smith might still want to pump the brakes a bit.  

2022 NFL Draft picks by Houston Texans

  • No. 3 Overall: Derek Stingley Jr., CB, LSU
  • No. 15 Overall: Kenyon Green, OL, Texas A&M
  • No. 37 Overall: Jalen Pitre, S, Baylor
  • No. 44 Overall: John Metchie III, WR, Alabama
  • No. 75 Overall: Christian Harris, LB, Alabama
  • No. 107 Overall: Dameon Pierce, RB, Florida
  • No. 150 Overall: Thomas Booker, DT, Stanford
  • No. 170 Overall: Teagan Quitoriano, TE, Oregon State
  • No. 205 Overall: Austin Deculus, OT, LSU

No. 3 Overall: Derek Stingley Jr., CB, LSU

Derek Stingley Jr. of the Houston Texans
Houston Texans cornerback Derek Stingley Jr. | Mike Calendrillo/Sportscasting

If the Texans wanted to improve a secondary that ranked 23rd in passing yards allowed last year, adding Derek Stingley Jr. is a tremendous way to do exactly that. The LSU product is a versatile cornerback who uses his speed and vision to bait quarterbacks into poor decisions, has good ball skills, and willingly helps against the run. That should make him an immediate contributor at a lackluster positional group highlighted by Desmond King II. But it’s still a somewhat-questionable use of resources given the glaring needs along the offensive line and the defensive edges (particularly given the talent drop-off after Travon Walker, Aidan Hutchinson, and Kayvon Thibodeaux).

Grade: B-

No. 15 Overall: Kenyon Green, OL, Texas A&M

Apparently, the Texans really do believe in the potential of Davis Mills. But the beauty of this pick is that it helps build up the offensive infrastructure in Houston even if last year’s third-round choice isn’t the long-term answer under center. Then again, despite Kenyon Green’s mobility and versatility alongside the offensive line, this is a big reach at No. 15 given his potential inability to avoid whistles with his hand placement and overaggression in some blocking schemes.

Grade: C-

No. 37 Overall: Jalen Pitre, S, Baylor

The Texans continue to revamp their secondary by pairing Derek Stingley Jr. with Jalen Pitre, a good open-field tackler with solid ball instincts. Opposing passers will have to exercise far more caution in 2022 than they did in 2021.

Grade: A-

No. 44 Overall: John Metchie III, WR, Alabama

Houston had bigger needs along the offensive line and on the defensive edges, which makes it less than ideal they took a wide receiver in John Metchie III who likely settles into the slot once he’s fully recovered from the ACL tear.

Grade: C

No. 75 Overall: Christian Harris, LB, Alabama

A marvelous athlete unless he’s asked to power through an offensive lineman, Christian Harris can cover from sideline to sideline and navigate through traffic effectively, whether in the second level or when blitzing the quarterback. He might not be a three-down player, but the upside was appropriately tantalizing in the third round.

Grade: B+

Day 3 Picks

No. 107 Overall: Dameon Pierce, RB, Florida

The Houston Texans got a bruising runner who can wear down opposing defenses and catch the ball out of the backfield. Dameon Pierce wasn’t a three-down back for the Gators, but he has all the traits to become one in the NFL.

Grade: B+

No. 150 Overall: Thomas Booker, DT, Stanford

Booker is incredibly smart and a team leader who will be good in the locker room but doesn’t have great size or athleticism and is inconsistent. He’s a rotational D-lineman at best.

Grade: C

No. 170 Overall: Teagan Quitoriano, TE, Oregon State

The Oregon State pass-catcher has an NFL body but needs to become a better blocker to stand out as an every-down TE. His basketball background should make him a good red-zone target.

Grade: C+

No. 205 Overall: Austin Deculus, OT, LSU

Deculus is a hard-nosed right tackle but has no positional flexibility and isn’t that athletic. He’s a reach here, even in the sixth round.

Grade: D

Like Sportscasting on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter @sportscasting19.

Related: Lovie Smith Gave Texans QB Davis Mills a Glowing Endorsement Ahead of the 2022 NFL Offseason: ‘He Played About as Well as Any of the Rookie Quarterbacks Did Last Year’