Sean Pendergast

2022 Heisman Odds Offer Plenty of Intrigue for Texan Fans

Texan fans may need to get to know Alabama's Bryce Young this season.
Texan fans may need to get to know Alabama's Bryce Young this season. Screen grab from YouTube
When you root for a good NFL football team, the list of Heisman Trophy contenders is a mere curiosity. It's just something to follow casually during the college football regular season. When you root for a bad NFL football team, or one with quarterback issues, the Heisman Trophy contender list is like the Sears catalog (dated reference alert!), an invitation to go shopping on every college football Saturday.

I don't know where the Texans currently fall on the "quarterback need" scale. Right now, they're probably not a very good football team, and their quarterback Davis Mills is a second year guy with some promise. The uncertainty alone over Mills' future and potential likely make the Texans' fan base Heisman-Sears catalog shoppers this season.

So, with that said, here is the current odds board for the 2022 Heisman Trophy, with Texans related comments afterwards:
C.J. STROUD, QB Ohio State  +200
BRYCE YOUNG, QB Alabama  +350
CALEB WILLIAMS, QB USC  +700
WILL ANDERSON, DE Alabama +2000
BIJAN ROBINSON, RB Texas +2000
D.J. UIAGALELEI, QB Clemson +2500
QUINN EWERS, QB Texas +2800
DILLON GABRIEL, QB Oklahoma +3000
JAXON SMITH-NJIGBA, WR Ohio State +3300
JAHMYR GIBBS, RB Alabama +3300
TYLER VAN DYKE, QB Miami +4000
TREVEYON HENDERSON, RB Ohio State +4000
ANTHONY RICHARDSON, QB Florida +5000
KEDON SLOVIS, QB Pitt +5000
J.T. DANIELS, QB West Virginia +5000
JAXSON DART, QB Ole MIss +5000
HENDON HOOKER, QB Tennessee +6600
MALIK CUNNINGHAM, QB Louisville +6600
WILL LEVIS, QB Kentucky +6600
BO NIX, QB Oregon +6600
K.J. JEFFERSON, QB Arkansas +6600
JAYDEN DANIELS, QB LSU +6600
BRAELON ALLEN, RB Wisconsin +6600
SPENCER RATTLER, QB South Carolina +8000
JORDAN ADDISON, WR USC +8000
PHIL JURKOVEC, QB Boston College +8000
If you're a Texan fan, the experts tell you to start at the top
I've probably seen roughly 20 mock drafts for the 2023 NFL Draft since the 2022 NFL Draft ended back in April, and this is not an exaggeration — I think at least 70 percent of them had (a) the Texans selecting first, and (b) selecting C.J. Stroud from Ohio State. Personally, I like Bryce Young, the reigning Heisman Trophy winner, a little bit better than I like Stroud, but the bottom line with this class is that there are probably five quarterbacks who could get selected in the top half of the first round. If Mills is able to hang on for another season as the Texans' starter in 2023, then maybe Caleb Williams of USC enters the picture in 2024 for the Texans, when they will, once again, have two first round picks, thanks to the Deshaun Watson trade.

The top two non quarterbacks are intriguing, too
Davis Mills' development this season is the Texans' biggest storyline, and make no mistake — if Mills develops into a viable 17-game starter for the Texans, it opens up so many roster construction possibilities. If Mills is the guy, this means the Texans don't need to use their first round picks on a quarterback, which could mean that they could use a top five pick next spring on edge rusher Will Anderson from Alabama, and could use their other first round pick on a guy like Bijan Robinson to pair up with Dameon Pierce for a couple seasons, before making one of them the bell cow back. A TON of non-QB possibilities enter the conversation, if Mills is the guy. Throw in Ohio State WR Jaxon Smith-Njigba as another non-QB possibility, as well.

The bottom half of this list has some stark reminders that nothing this time of year is in concrete
This time last year, the week before the REAL start of the college football regular season, I remember jotting down the start times for the games involving all of the highly touted quarterbacks, since I just assumed the Texans would be drafting one in 2022. Two of the names I had at the top of my list were Oklahoma's Spencer Rattler and USC's Kedon Slovis. Fast forward to the end of the 2022 season, and not only did neither enter the draft, but they both ended up transferring to different schools, and are now trying to play their way back onto the NFL Draft radar. On the Heisman odds, Slovis (now at Pitt) is +5000 and Rattler (now at South Carolina) is +8000. Life comes at you pretty fast.

Listen to Sean Pendergast on SportsRadio 610 from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. weekdays. Also, follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/SeanTPendergast and like him on Facebook at facebook.com/SeanTPendergast.
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Sean Pendergast is a contributing freelance writer who covers Houston area sports daily in the News section, with periodic columns and features, as well. He also hosts the morning drive on SportsRadio 610, as well as the pre-game and post game shows for the Houston Texans.
Contact: Sean Pendergast