By KRISTIE RIEKEN
AP Sports Writer
HOUSTON (AP) — The Houston Texans got their franchise quarterback by drafting CJ Stroud with the No. 2 pick in the NFL draft Thursday night and then traded with Arizona for the third overall pick and bolster their defense. with Alabama outside linebacker Will Anderson Jr.
Stroud was a two-year starter for Ohio State, where he passed for 8,123 yards with 85 touchdowns and just 12 interceptions as the Buckeyes went 21-4.
Stroud joins a team that hasn’t been able to find a reliable quarterback in the two seasons since Deshaun Watson requested a trade before being traded to the Cleveland Browns. Davis Mills has started most of the past two seasons, going 5-22-1 in 28 games with 26 starts while the Texans were among the worst teams in the NFL.
The Texans then traded the 12th and 33rd picks in this year’s draft and a first- and third-round pick next year to the Cardinals to trade and trap Anderson. Houston also received the 105th pick in this year’s draft in the deal.
Anderson was a three-year starter with the Crimson Tide where he amassed 204 tackles, including 58 1/2 tackles for losses and 34 1/2 sacks.
Stroud becomes the third quarterback Houston has selected in the first roundjoining Watson, the 12th overall pick in 2017 and David Carr, the team’s first draft pick who was the first overall pick in 2002.
The Texans hired former DeMeco Ryans player to coach the team this offseason as they try to turn things around after winning just 11 combined games over the past three seasons.
The 12th pick they sent to Arizona was part of the Watson deal. ___
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