Scouting Report-The Longhorns just seem to keep churning out NFL defensive linemen, and Houston is no exception. As I go back and re-watch Longhorn gams, specifically to chart Houston, a few things really stood out. First the good stuff. He gets low. his leverage is exceptional. In the 3 technique, he gets under the pads of the guard and puts them at a disadvantage quickly. Also, he's much more athletic than he appears. Nice pass rusher from the inside and uses his arms really well to work through double teams. Not really a bull rush kind of pass rusher prefering to use his quick feet and solid technique. Houston does a nice job anticipating the snap count and getting off the ball quickly, and is strong in run support, especially in lateral pursuit. Physically Houston has a unique frame. He's stocky and thick, but I can't decide if he looks more like a 3-4 DE or NT at times.
Draft Status-Houston's ability to play multiple positions and do so at a high level means he's more than likely a mid-second round pick. If this wasn't such a deep defensive tackle class, he might be considered a first round prospect.
Final Analysis-Houston has really been moving up draft boards since the season ended. Watched the national title game again today, and the number of double teams the Crimson Tide gave him was a testament to his skills. Granted he didn't do very well beating the double team, which is a function of his strength, but regardless they wanted him accounted for in a big way. If he decides to belly up to the training table and put on a little more weight, I can certainly see him as a 3-4 nose tackle. But if he stays where he is, a DE in that same scheme would make sense. Obviously his build means he could play inside in a 4-3 as well, but dont be shocked if he's drafted to play that 5 technique in a 3-4 to take advantage of his pass rush ability. Of course with any big guy, effort and output are inconsistent and needs to be better, and although he is productive he's not as flashy or well known as other prospects which will push him down a little. But there's no doubt he can play.
Reminds me of: Glen Dorsey, DE Kansas City Chiefs-Similar builds, similar games between Dorsey and Houston. Dorsey was a high first round pick and Houstin will be a high 2nd. The most I watch Houston, the more Dorsey I see in him.
Scouting Report written by Curt Popejoy