Houston Texans 2024 Mock Draft: Jared Verse, Mekhi Wingo Beef Up the Defense

The Houston Texans are ahead of schedule. Which players from the 2024 NFL Draft class can help them improve again?

After a surprising season where the Houston Texans seemed to be well ahead of schedule, they now turn to improving again through the NFL Draft. After picking up two franchise cornerstones in QB C.J. Stroud and EDGE Will Anderson Jr. in last year’s draft, how can the Texans repeat their success?

Using the PFN Mock Draft Simulator, here is who could be on the board for the Texans in the 2024 NFL Draft.

Houston Texans 2024 NFL Draft Picks

The Texans look to build on an impressive first campaign under DeMeco Ryans with eight 2024 NFL Draft picks. A trio of seventh-round selections will test the capability of the scouting department to find late-round gold or perhaps be used to play the board come late April.

  • Round 1, Pick 23 (From CLV): Jared Verse, EDGE, Florida State
  • Round 2, Pick 59: Ja’Lynn Polk, WR, Washington
  • Round 3, Pick 86 (From PHI): Mekhi Wingo, DT, LSU
  • Round 4, Pick 123 (From CLV): Audric Estime, RB, Notre Dame
  • Round 4, Pick 127: Junior Colson, LB, Michigan
  • Round 7, Pick 196: Fabien Lovett, DT, Florida State
  • Round 7, Pick 210: Zion Nelson, OT, Miami (FL)
  • Round 7, Pick 219: Luke McCaffrey, WR, Rice

Houston Texans 2024 NFL Mock Draft

Round 1, Pick 23 (From CLV): Jared Verse, EDGE, Florida State

The Texans found an answer to their pass rush in the 2023 NFL Draft when they drafted Anderson at No. 3 overall. But, on the other side, Jonathan Greenard is scheduled to be a free agent, and the Texans should look to add at the position in April.

In this scenario, one of the best pass rushers in the 2024 NFL Draft has fallen into their laps. Jared Verse is an absolute technician who displays strong hands and quick burst to be productive immediately in the NFL. The pairing of Anderson and Verse on the edge in Houston for the future… Sign us up!

Round 2, Pick 59: Ja’Lynn Polk, WR, Washington

The wide receiver room in Houston has stepped up in 2023. Tank Dell looked like a gem until his season-ending injury, and Nico Collins seems to have turned a corner and looks to be a key weapon.

MORE: 2024 NFL Draft Big Board

However, that shouldn’t stop the Texans from exploring this WR class. It is arguably the best positional group in the 2024 NFL Draft and the best class of receivers we have seen for some time.

Ja’Lynn Polk has been an outstanding weapon for Washington in its magical season that ended in defeat in the National Championship Game. With 1,159 receiving yards and nine touchdowns, Polk looks like the real deal and is ready to take the field in the NFL.

Round 3, Pick 86 (From PHI): Mekhi Wingo, DT, LSU

Mekhi Wingo is an impact player working the interior of the defensive line, and his pass rush from inside has been awesome at LSU.

He shows great movement and technique to attack through the middle, while having the initial speed, power, and balance to penetrate the pocket. Wingo would beef up the Houston defensive line as the Texans look to get younger and more physical.

Round 4, Pick 123 (From CLV): Audric Estime, RB, Notre Dame

Running back Audric Estime is going overlooked in this class. In general, the RB group doesn’t look that strong, which may boost some players up into Day 2.

For Estime, his 1,341 yards and 18 touchdowns in 2023 were the best in his career. As a three-year player, he doesn’t have an overwhelming amount of tread on his tires, and his bruising play style complements the other rushers on the Texans’ roster.

Round 4, Pick 127: Junior Colson, LB, Michigan

Linebacker is one of the top needs on the Texans roster heading into 2024. However, there isn’t much depth available in the 2024 linebacker class, so picking one up early on Day 3 seems wise.

Junior Colson offers starting caliber potential with an intelligent, rangy style of play. He has incredible instincts to find the ball and has the strength and tenacity to fight through blocks.

Round 7, Pick 196: Fabien Lovett, DT, Florida State

Houston has already added one Florida State defensive lineman in this mock draft, but in Round 7, they go back to the well. The Texans have also already added an interior defensive lineman, but drafting one late allows Houston to reinforce their identity on defense while adding depth.

Fabien Lovett has developmental traits and a high motor. He has a speedy initial step and the core body strength to hold up the point of attack. Lovett performs best against the run and provides Houston with a different option up front.

Round 7, Pick 210: Zion Nelson, OT, Miami (FL)

Zion Nelson would be a good depth piece to pick up late on Day 3, as he adds experience and talent to the offensive line group.

MORE: NFL Draft Order

It is unlikely that Nelson will compete to start right away in Houston, but he is athletic and has a good-sized profile to continue to develop.

Round 7, Pick 219: Luke McCaffrey, WR, Rice

McCaffrey, you may recognize the name. That is because Luke McCaffrey is the younger brother of San Francisco 49ers RB Christian McCaffrey and the son of former NFL receiver Ed McCaffrey. Luke, however, is getting draft attention of his own.

While not expected to be selected until later in the draft, McCaffrey will be at the 2024 Senior Bowl, where he should thrive in one-on-ones.

His physical, nasty play has the potential to overpower opponents. He has the required length, strength, and speed to make a real impact on an NFL roster and is the type of player who should be picked up late on.

All the 2024 NFL Draft resources you need — the draft order, the top QBs, the Top 100 prospects, and the full 2024 Big Board — right at your fingertips at Pro Football Network!

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