NFL Draft Rumors: Could Ryan Mallett be traded to the Texans?

Could the Texans be working out a deal for Ryan Mallett with the Patriots? The rumor may not be as weird as you think, considering Bill O'Brien's history with the quarterback.

The Houston Texans and New England Patriots may be finalizing a trade that would send quarterback Ryan Mallett to Houston. According to Tom E. Curran of CSN New England, the "machinations have begun" on a deal that would give the Texans a potential starting quarterback and greatly influence the imminent NFL Draft. At least, that's according to one source. Another one of Curran's sources isn't as sure that an agreement is forthcoming.

Why this makes sense

The Texans desperately need a quarterback. With Matt Schaub now in Oakland, the team is set to start Case Keenum or Ryan Fitzpatrick if it doesn't bring in another body. Neither is a particularly palatable option.

Houston has been tied to seemingly every member of a deep class of top-end quarterbacks in this year's draft, but recent rumblings suggest that the team has settled on Jadeveon Clowney as its No. 1 pick, adding credence to the idea that the Texans have figured out other means of acquiring a franchise passer.

As for Mallett, he has thrown just four in-season passes for the Patriots since being selected in the third round of the 2011 NFL Draft. He has an exceptionally strong arm, however, and fits the mold of the bigger, prototypical passer that Texans head coach Bill O'Brien has preferred throughout his career. Case in point: O'Brien was the Pats' offensive coordinator when the team drafted Mallett.

Why this doesn't make sense

Mallett is still an unproven NFL quarterback, and may not be as enticing an option for the Texans as Johnny Manziel, Blake Bortles, Teddy Bridgewater or Derek Carr. O'Brien clearly liked Mallett once upon a time -- but as a value pick in the third round. After studying tape of this year's projected first-rounders, he may have seen something he likes much better.

The rumor makes a lot of sense from a logistics standpoint, but the Texans still have to like Mallett as a player, and it's not clear what they could have seen in the last three seasons to make them think he can be the team's quarterback of the future.

Likelihood: 5/10

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