The Texans Have Plenty of Options With the No. 1 Pick in the Draft. That's the Problem.

There's no clear path for the team, only hope.

But need at the quarterback position can make otherwise rational men do very irrational things. And for all of his flaws, some more perceived than actual, the mystique of Manziel may be too much to pass up.

The Heisman winner might be the most intriguing potential first-round quarterback in the history of the draft. "Manziel is a whole other discussion. Your [offensive coordinator] is gonna have to design an offense for what he can do and live with what he can't do," Casserly surmised.

Yes, there's Manziel's unique, devil-may-care style of play. There's also the fact that you could just as easily envision Manziel getting stuck in Cabo on his bye week as you could hoisting the Lombardi Trophy.

The ever-changing tides of prognostication.
The ever-changing tides of prognostication.

The Johnny Manziel Experience would bring a whole new meaning to the phrase "ride or die."

Option No. 3 for the Texans would be to trade back in the first round with a team that's in love with Clowney or one of the quarterbacks and collect some extra draft picks, a plan that might make the most pragmatic sense but would make draft night one big popcorn fart for Texans fans.

Trading back, at this point, would be like having your buddy's bachelor party get switched at the last minute from Las Vegas to Cleveland.

Trading back brings one other hangup — it's not easy to do. It takes two to tango, and finding a trade partner is easier said than done, even in this day and age when the No. 1 overall pick doesn't bring nearly the financial burden that it did before the new rookie wage scale was enacted in 2011.

"We never got one offer for either No. 1 pick, and we shopped it," said Casserly.

Timing is everything. Some years, having the No. 1 pick is easy. In 2012, it wasn't so much a selection as it was a coronation when Andrew Luck went to the Indianapolis Colts. That was easy.

Peyton Manning in 1998, Michael Vick in 2001, Cam Newton in 2011. There was no decision-making going on with any of those picks. The main concern for the teams choosing them was spelling their names right on the card that was sent up to the commissioner to announce the pick.

This isn't one of those years. Nobody truly stands out; everyone has flaws. The decisions in this draft are complex — choosing whether to go with Clowney or a quarterback, and if it's a quarterback, which one will it be?

No pressure, Bill and Rick. It's just your jobs, and the emotional well-being of the entire city of Houston, on the line.

If this is what hope looks like, maybe Andy Dufresne's buddy Red had a more poignant take:

"Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive a man insane."

Listen to Sean Pendergast on SportsRadio 610 from 2 to 6 p.m. weekdays. Also follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/Sean­Cablinasian or email him at sean.pendergast@cbsradio.com.

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