The Houston Texans have not been shy about their need for a quarterback this offseason, as owner Bob McNair already stated earlier this month that he believes his franchise has "a good chance at getting" a quarterback it likes coming out of college, via the Houston Chronicle. The 2016 NFL Draft has multiple quarterbacks expected to land in the first round, but North Dakota State's Carson Wentz, California's Jared Goff and Memphis' Paxton Lynch will likely all be off the board by the time the Texans select with the 22nd pick.
"We need a reliable quarterback," said McNair. "We don't need a superstar, but it needs to be reliable play that won't take anything away from us."
Reliable play was not something the Texans got from quarterback Brian Hoyer in their Wild Card round playoff matchup against the Chiefs, as he completed only 44.1 percent of his passes with no touchdowns and four interceptions.
The Texans have made it known that they are in a market for a quarterback this offseason and would prefer to get one in the draft. While the top three quarterback prospects are expected to be taken off the board by the time the Texans select, two quarterbacks to keep an eye on are Penn State's Christian Hackenberg and Louisiana Tech's Jeff Driskel.
Both Hackenberg and Driskel are expected to be available in the middle rounds of the draft, and both could be quarterbacks Houston looks to target. Hackenberg's fit with the Texans is for all the obvious reasons, as he was recruited to play at Penn State under then-head coach Bill O'Brien, now the Texans' head coach. O'Brien coached Hackenberg to his best season in college as a freshman and likely believes he can help develop him into a future franchise quarterback. Hackenberg's play dropped after O'Brien left Penn State, and while he does deserve some of the blame, his team also struggled to protect him throughout the 2015 season.
While Hackenberg reuniting with O'Brien in Houston seems like the likeliest of scenarios, it's worth keeping an eye on Driskel in the lead-up to the draft. The Louisiana Tech senior transfer quarterback completed 62.4 percent of his passes for 4,033 yards with 27 passing touchdowns. The former blue-chip recruit impressed scouts at Senior Bowl week with a two-minute drill score at the end of the fourth quarter. Driskel has improved his draft stock already this season and is being projected as high as a second round prospect, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle.
Driskel has already met with roughly 25 NFL franchises including the Texans and is another quarterback Texans fans should keep an eye on in the lead-up to the 2016 NFL Draft.