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- Texans Sign DE Mario Williams

Chris Pokorny April 28, 2006
Chris Pokorny
PFC Owner & Writer

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The first pick in the draft shows you that months of anticipation can change in an instant. Reggie Bush, projected to be the first overall pick in the draft, will have to wait to here his name called tomorrow. The Houston Texans signed defensive end Mario Williams to a six-year deal worth $54 million. The move means that the Texans have taken Williams with the first pick in the 2006 NFL Draft.

Williams, who attended North Carolina State, will have $26.5 million in guaranteed money. Speculation had begun earlier in the week that the Texans may take Williams if they were pleased with contract negotiations. Apparently, they were. Texans general manager Charley Casserly knows that he had to make a very tough decision.

"This is a decision that took a lot of time to make, but at the end of the day we felt this was the best player for our football team," Casserly said. "Both players, Reggie Bush and Mario Williams, are going to, I think, be great pros. We made the decision to go with defense."

Suddenly, the entire first round of the draft could change. The New Orleans Saints may accept trade offers for anyone interested in Reggie Bush, since they already have a solid running back. The New York Jets would love for Bush to suddenly fall into their hands with Curtis Martin nearing the end of his career.

Scouting Report on Mario Williams: Mario Williams is the best defensive lineman entering the draft this season. He had 62 tackles and an enormous 14.5 sacks this past season for North Carolina State.

Williams has all of the tools that a great defensive lineman needs in the NFL. His strength and athleticism allowed him to cause havoc on quarterbacks in college, and he should immediately overpower some of the weaker starting offensive tackles in the NFL. His tall figure allows him to deflect passes at the line of scrimmage and sometimes his tips end up in the hands of a fellow teammate. Besides being able to rush the quarterback, he is strong enough to stop the run when needed. Sometimes he tends to overdo his moves around an offensive lineman, taking himself out of the direction of where the play is being run. He is 6'7" and weighs in at 290 pounds.

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