2014 NFL Draft: Unveiling The Texans Tracker
Graphic by Monica Fuentes
Isn't it fun living in the city with the first overall pick in the NFL Draft?
Seriously, I think sometimes the fervor surrounding the speculation on who the Texans will take is part of the punishment of going 2-14, like a residual aftershock. We are only a few weeks into the NFL Draft process (combine, pro days, workouts, leading up to the draft itself), and already we've had our emotions tugged multiple different directions by sketchy sources at best. Frankly, we've learned more about just how flimsy a report needs to be to move the needle with fans and media than we have about which way the Texans are leaning.
Let's take a look at the various twists and turns so far, along with the outlet and the "money quote from each one (with my comments preceded by "SP")...
2/4/14 -- BLAKE BORTLES OR JOHNNY MANZIEL per RUSS LANDE
"According to trusted sources, the Texans are initially leaning towards taking either Blake Bortles or Johnny Manziel with the top pick."
Houston Texans vs. Arizona Cardinals
TicketsSun., Nov. 19, 12:00pm
Rice Owls Football vs. North Texas
TicketsSat., Nov. 25, 12:00pm
Houston Texans vs. San Francisco 49ers
TicketsSun., Dec. 10, 12:00pm
Houston Texans vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
TicketsMon., Dec. 25, 3:30pm
Houston Open - Good Any One Day Grounds
TicketsSun., Apr. 1, 11:59pm
SP: This was the first report of draft season, two days after the Super Bowl, and I think part of what got everybody excited about this is that it was the first real draft news of the post season. (Yes, sadly this qualified as news.) Apparently, the degree to which we trust Russ Lande's sources was enough for us to take stock in this little nugget.
2/19/14 -- JOHNNY MANZIEL per MIKE FREEMAN:
"League sources increasingly believe the Houston Texans will take Manziel with the first pick. The organization has said very little publicly, but privately, the belief is that Houston has been quietly falling in lust with him."
SP: A couple weeks went by, and on the eve of the NFL Scouting Combine, Mike Freeman of Bleacher Report broke this news from his "league sources." So, my question is "What the hell is a league source?" Someone who works in the league? Someone who covers the league? Someone who watches the show "The League"? Also, who says that a team is falling "in lust" with a player? 2/20/14 -- BLAKE BORTLES per MATT MILLER:
"One high ranking team source told me if the draft were today, the Houston texans would draft Blake Bortles."
Assuming we are only giving this story any credence if indeed the "high ranking source" is in fact a Texans employee (and not the owner of the ice cream truck across the street from Reliant Stadium --does it get any higher ranking than OWNER??
), are we to believe that someone with a medium-high to high level title within the organization decided to disclose to Matt Miller from Bleacher Report what their plans would be right now in the draft, 24 hoursbefore
telling the entire media assembled in Indianapolis that they've barely begun whittling down their list of prospects?
2/26/14 -- JADEVEON CLOWNEY per MIKE FREEMAN:
"Yet around the league, the view is that the Texans are starting to slowly fall in lust with Clowney."
SP: Freeman is back and there he goes again citing "lust" as the overriding emotion the Texans are feeling. That would be twice in one week they've fallen "in lust" with a prospect. Clearly, the Texans as an organization have very loose morals and enjoy sleeping around with multiple prospects. It's more like they're this season's Bachelor than the team with the first overall pick. Also, what the hell is "around the league," anyway? If you talk to five of your friends in five different NFL cities does that qualify as "around the league"?
By the way, I liked Bleacher Report a lot more when all they did was post inane 25 picture slideshows on things like "The 25 Best Skanks Who Contracted An STD From Dennis Rodman". This world we live in now where people are buying them as a credible source for breaking news is not a world I am long for.
Trusted sources...league sources....high ranking source...around the league....
These are all phrases that apparently compel us to report whatever follows it as news. Obviously any permutation involving either the word "source" or "league" is good with us, and if you use both, then great googily moogily!
Going forward, let's track the absurdity of the chase for scooping everyone on who the Texans will select with the first pick, and unveil the Texans Tracker! Track the ridiculousness, relive the magic!
So I repeat...isn't it fun living in the city with the first overall pick in the NFL Draft?