The Texans picked quarterback Davis Mills in the third round on Friday night and a common reaction to the news was that the team was beginning to plan for life without Deshaun Watson.
Watson remains on the roster, but he wants to be traded and is facing numerous civil lawsuits for sexual assault. Those allegations have also sparked criminal and NFL investigations that could compromise his availability for the 2021 season.
Mills joins Tyrod Taylor as quarterback options if the Texans will move forward without Watson, but General Manager Nick Caserio said the move was not a comment on Watson’s future with the team.
“It’s just part of the team-building process,” Caserio said, via Adam Hill of the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “What we tried to do was evaluate the players on the board and go through our process. There were several players we were discussing in that range. When it came time to pick, we felt it was the best decision for our team at the time. It doesn’t impact any one player individually. You try to make thoughtful decisions. It’s not one factor. It’s not one person. There’s a myriad of things that go into it.”
Mills was Houston’s first pick of this year’s draft as their first two picks went to Miami in the Laremy Tunsil trade. That trade came before Caserio was on the job and the lack of picks didn’t do him any favors as he tries to turn around a 4-12 team.