With the #26 overall pick the Houston Texans selected outside linebacker Whitney Mercilus from Illinois.
Tale of the Tape
Weight: 261 lbs.
Arms: 33 7/8″
Hands: 9 1/4″
With the board falling better than what the Houston Texans expected, they decided on what appears to be the best player available in Whitney Mercilus. Plenty of questions were surrounding him heading into the draft being considered a “one year wonder”. Playing defensive end for the Illini, Mercilus declared early after a dominating junior season after he led the nation with 16 sacks and was also voted the top defensive end in the nation (Ted Hendricks Award).
Coming out of college Mercilus was considered a defensive end only, but as the evaluation continued whispers started that he could possibly be a stand up rusher. With the exit of Mario Williams, and with Connor Barwin and Brooks Reed pulling majority of the work on the edge, this was a quality pick. Now added to Reed and Barwin, the outside linebackers for the Texans have gotten even younger and more athletic.
Many analyst saw the Texans selecting a wide receiver like Stephen Hill (Georgia Tech) and Rueben Randle (LSU), but at that point of the draft the wide receivers left would be considered reaches. The Texans took a great value pick and improved and already impressive defense.
The Fighting Illini continue to place football players in the first round of the NFL draft. Both defensive end Whitney Mercilus and wide receiver A.J. Jenkins were called with the good news Thursday evening. For Mercilus, it was a dream come true. He was not highly recruited out of high school, but his play on the field in 2011 got the attention of pro scouts.
About 24 hours into Whitney Mercilus' tenure with the Texans, two things are already clear: The 6-3, 261 pound pass rusher is motivated to prove that he was not a one-year wonder at Illinois and he has a sincere desire to be a benefactor to his family. Those two themes were prevalent during Mercilus' press conference at Reliant Stadium Friday afternoon, when he was formally...
Whitney Mercilus had one - and only one - spectacular season at Illinois. That was all Texans defensive coordinator Wade Phillips needed to see.
Houston used the 26th pick in the first round on the 6-foot-3, 261-pound Mercilus, and the projected outside linebacker officially joined his new team Friday.
Mercilus was an early entry junior. He led the nation in sacks with 16 and forced...
The Houston Texans, despite trades all over the place, remained at spot no. 26. They surprised many when they selected defensive end Whitney Mercilus from Illinois.
Houston was home to the NFL’s no. 2 defense in 2011, and hardly appeared to have holes that needed filling on the defensive side of the ball. This being said, it was even more shocking that the Texans chose a...
HOUSTON (AP) -- The Houston Texans have selected Illinois defensive end Whitney Mercilus with the 26th overall pick in the NFL draft.
The 6-foot-3, 261-pound Mercilus is an early-entry junior who only started for one season in college. He led the nation in sacks (16) and forced fumbles (8). He earned All-Big Ten honors and won the 2011 Ted Hendricks award.
The Texans finished 10...
And with the 26th overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft the Houston Texans select DE Whitney Mercilus from Illinois. Speed, Speed, Speed. Mercilus runs a 4.6 40 and can be an impact player for the Texans who already have a solid defensive core.
Check out the highlights.
He came out of nowhere to win the Ted Hendricks Award as the best Defensive End in all of college football. He rose from obscurity to become an All-American at Illinois. Now Whitney Mercilus is a member of the Houston Texans, joining fellow Big Ten alum J.J. Watt of the Wisconsin Badgers as the men who will fill the pass-rushing void left by the departed 2006 #1 overall draft selection...
It was said often that the Chicago Bears would be looking at defensive end in the first round, and that is exactly what they did. No it wasn’t Whitney Mercilus from Illinois or Nick Perry from USC. The Bears selected Shea McClellin from Boise State. A player that did not have to be taken with the 19th overall [...]
The Chicago Bears surprised fans in the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft by taking Shea McClellin, defensive end out of Boise State. Most discussion by fans heading into the draft had focused on Whitney Mercilus, defensive end from Illinois or Michael Floyd, wide receiver from Notre Dame falling to the Bears.
According to general manager Phil Emery, McClellin will play defensive...
On a night, when a couple Illinois football players were moving on to the next level, a new high profile playmaker was coming to them. On NFL Draft night (round one) Whitney Mercilus was selected by the Houston Texans and AJ Jenkins by the San Francisco 49ers. So you might have missed this story.
According to Rivals, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Ohio State and Wisconsin were among the...
25. New England Patriots-Dont'a Hightower, LB Alabama-Are you kidding? It's not right that the Patriots can score a guy like Hightower. I think he's a Ray Lewis type talent and on the Patriots he's going to be great for a really long time. LOVE IT!
26. Houston Texans-Whitney Mercilus, DE Illinois-Very smart pick here. Texans had to get a pass rusher and...
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