With quarterback Deshaun Watson‘s future with the Texans uncertain after an offseason where he first demanded a trade and currently faces 22 civil lawsuits alleging inappropriate conduct and sexual assault, Houston used the 67th pick — and their first of the in the 2021 NFL draft — to draft Mills.
Along with Watson, the Texans have two other quarterbacks on their roster: Tyrod Taylor and Ryan Finley. When asked about Watson, Texans general manager Nick Caserio said drafting Mills “doesn’t impact anybody.”
“Again, our whole philosophy has been to create as much competition as possible and we’ll continue to do that,” Caserio said.
And when Caserio was asked if he expects Mills to be the Texans’ future franchise quarterback, the general manager avoided the question.
After Mills was drafted, the quarterback was asked what he knew about Watson’s current situation.
“Not much about it, obviously,” Mills said. “The only thing I can control is how I how I handle myself.”
Mills has started just 11 games over two seasons, including five in a shortened 2020 season. According to ESPN Stats & Information, Mills had a 92.8 Total QBR in starts against ranked opponents over the last two years, third-best in FBS.
Mills said he did not have a lot of pre-draft interaction with the Texans, so he was “surprised by the call” from Houston on Friday night.
“I feel like I have a ton of ability to come in and compete at the next level and I’m fully ready in that manner,” Mills said.
When not pressured, Mills averaged 2.25 seconds before the pass, second-only to Trevor Lawrence among FBS quarterbacks ranked in the Scouts Inc. rankings and 10th overall in the FBS, according to ESPN Stats & Info.
Mills is the first quarterback taken by the Texans since the team drafted Watson 12th overall in 2017.
The Texans also traded up to draft wide receiver Nico Collins, making it the first time since 2003 that Houston drafted an offensive skill player with each of its first two picks.