Nuk and Sammy, together again?
It's not likely, given the pressing concerns that earned the Houston Texans the dubious honor of picking first in the 2014 NFL draft, but it might be tempting nonetheless, according NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock.
After watching Watkins' workout on Sunday, Mayock suggested that the former Clemson wide receiver has worked his way into the mix as the possible No. 1 selection in the draft - a group that includes South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney and a trio of quarterbacks in Louisville's Teddy Bridgewater, Texas A&M's Johnny Manziel and Central Florida's Blake Bortles.
“What I really like about this kid is he’s got some toughness,” Mayock said. “He’ll go over the middle. He’ll physically beat press coverage. He high-points the ball. He’s got a little attitude about him. He blocks people. He’s got an attitude like he wants to be the best player there is and when you combine that with his physical ability, I think it’s awesome.”
South Carolina cornerback Victor Hampton on Sunday named Watkins as the best receiver he's ever faced.
“He’s No. 1,” Hampton said. “He’s a guy you’re going to think about from Sunday to Saturday.”
No one has been able to offer much more than informed speculation about the thinking of the Texans, who last season made Hopkins their top pick with the 26th selection of the draft.
The Texans' most glaring need would seem to be in adding a premier quarterback to their mix. Clowney is enticing as the overall best available player, and Watkins has now put his name in consideration for that designation, as well.
Were the Texans to choose Clowney or Watkins, they would have to wait until the second round to draft a quarterback. With Bridgewater, Manziel and Bortles widely projected as first-rounders, Houston would likely be looking at Fresno State's David Carr or Alabama's A.J. McCarron - Mayock's fourth and fifth picks - or from a 'next best' pool that includes Zach Mettenberger of LSU, Jimmy Garoppolo of Eastern Illinois, Clemson's Tajh Boyd, Georgia's Aaron Murray, Wyoming's Brett Smith, or Virginia Tech's Logan Thomas.
Clowney, meanwhile, did nothing to hurt his No. 1 chances on Monday when he ran a stunning, unofficial 4.47 40 at the NFL Combine. He followed with a clocking of 4.48. His 'official' adjusted time is likely to be just over 4.5 seconds.
Clowney - who made headlines of another sort on Sunday when he bench-pressed just 21 repetitions - shut down his on-field workout after three drills, passing on the remainder of timing stations and skill drills. He later told the NFL Network that he was dealing with a tight hip flexor. He had a vertical jump of 37.5 and a 10-4 broad jump.