2013 NFL Mock Draft 2.0: Predicting Picks 22-32

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October 6, 2012; Gainesville FL, USA; LSU Tigers linebacker Kevin Minter (46) rushes during the second half against the Florida Gators at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Florida Gators defeated the Louisiana State 14-6. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

27. Houston Texans-Kevin Minter, LB, LSU

The Houston Texans don’t have a glaring hole at middle linebacker, but they have a chance to take an impactful middle linebacker and fill one of the bigger needs with this pick.

Minter is a tackling machine, as he averaged 10 tackles per game and finished a game against Florida, a BCS team, with 20 tackles. Against a prominent Clemson squad, Minter recorded 19 tackles. Minter also averaged one sack every two games in his last eight games, and he sacked Florida quarterback Jacob Driskel twice against the Gators. While there are better players, Minter is one of the better tacklers in the draft.

Brian Cushing, who tore his ACL early in 2012, can play all three linebacker positions. Brooks Reed could move to inside linebacker, so the Texans could use Minter at middle linebacker, Cushing at outside linebacker and Reed at inside linebacker. That would make for a strong linebacking corps, and it would allow the Texans to fill one of the only “holes” they have.