2012 NFL Mock Draft: Texans Select Dontari Poe In SB Nation Mock Draft

In SB Nation's annual blogger mock draft, in which each team is represented by a blogger from their respective SB Nation sites, Battle Red Blog, SB Nation's Houston Texans site, selected Memphis defensive tackle Dontari Poe for their team in the first round.

Lost in the Texans' defensive improvement last season was that the defense was still weak up the middle against the run, which shouldn't surprise anyone who has ever seen Shaun Cody or Earl Mitchell play. Enter Dontari Poe. While Wade Phillips does not normally use a NT with 2-gap size, he's done so when the talent was available (Ted Washington, Jamal Williams). Poe would give him that talent, but with the added bonus of having the speed and agility to play the 1-gap style that Wade prefers, especially on passing downs. There was some discussion that perhaps the Texans should look at Whitney Mercilus or Nick Perry due to the departure of Mario Williams, and there were some concerns about Poe's possibly being a Combine warrior. In the end, however, we simply couldn't pass up improving the NT position with the unreal combination of speed, size, and strength that Poe brings to the table.

This could come as a surprise to some because the Texans are expected by many to use their first-round pick on a wide receiver to compliment Andre Johnson and take over for him if and when he is injured or retires. However, Dontari Poe, who would be a good fit for a 3-4 defense as a nose tackle, could make a scary defense much scarier for the 2012 season while they attempt to fight for a spot in the playoffs for the second year in a row.

For more on the Texans, head to Battle Red Blog, and for more mock draft updates, follow SB Nation Houston's StoryStream.

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