Houston Texans Transactions...

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May 08, 2015

Houston Texans Transactions (5/8): 2015 Draft Class Signs

  1. Texans sign all seven draft picks
  2. Texans transactions
Kevin Cooper (832) 667-2035
Amy Palcic (832) 667-2220
Charles Hampton (832) 667-2282
Brett Maikowski (832) 667-2037
Omar Majzoub (832) 667-2241
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                    Friday, May 8, 2015
HOUSTON – The Houston Texans have signed all seven members of the team’s 2015 draft class, it was announced today. CB Kevin Johnson (first round), LB Benardrick McKinney (second round), WR Jaelen Strong (third round), WR Keith Mumphery (fifth round), LB Reshard Cliett (sixth round), DT Christian Covington (sixth round) and RB Kenny Hilliard (seventh round) signed with the Texans today. Terms of their contracts were not disclosed.
Johnson was selected by the Texans with the 16th overall pick of the first round. He played in 47 career games at Wake Forest, starting the last 41 contests he appeared in for the Demon Deacons. Johnson recorded 191 tackles (125 solo), seven interceptions, 35 pass breakups, three forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries in four seasons. His career pass breakups total ranks fourth in school history.
Houston traded up in the second round to select McKinney with the 43rd overall pick in the draft. He is one of the all-time great linebackers in Mississippi State history, becoming the program’s first first-team All-America linebacker since 1999. In 2014, McKinney started all 13 games and for the second straight year, was the Bulldogs’ top tackler, recording 71 with eight tackles for loss, 3.0 sacks, four passes defensed, three fumble recoveries and one forced fumble. He played in 39 career games (36 starts) in three seasons and recorded 244 tackles, 19.5 tackles for loss, 7.5 sacks, seven passes defensed and six fumble recoveries.
The Texans moved up in the third round as well to draft Strong with the 70th overall pick. He saw action in 26 career games in two seasons at Arizona State, making 157 receptions for 2,287 receiving yards and 17 touchdowns. His career receptions total ranks fifth all-time in school history. In 2014, Strong tallied four All-America Awards including Sporting News, Sports Illustrated, CBSSports.com and ESPN.com. His 82 receptions that year are the third-most in a single-season in school history, while his 1,165 receiving yards placed him in a tie for fifth. Strong also added 10 touchdowns on the year.
Mumphery was drafted in the fifth round (175th overall) of the draft. As a three-year starter at flanker and four-year letterwinner at Michigan State, he recorded 88 catches for 1,348 yards (15.3 avg.) and seven touchdowns in 54 career games (26 starts). Mumphery also had 14 carries for 125 yards (8.9 avg.) and one touchdown in his career.
Cliett was selected by Houston in the sixth round (211th overall) of the draft. He saw action in 42 games in four seasons at South Florida, starting 27 contests. Cliett recorded 139 career tackles (95 solo), 9.0 sacks, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery. As a team captain in 2014, he led USF with a career-high 6.0 sacks.
Covington was drafted by the Texans in the sixth round with the 216th overall pick. In 33 career games at Rice, he contributed with 122 tackles (78 solo), 13.0 sacks, 28 tackles for loss, five passes defensed, two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. As a redshirt sophomore in 2013, Covington posted career highs of 59 tackles, 14 tackles for loss and three passes defensed, as he was named First Team All-Conference USA by league coaches. He is the first Rice interior defensive lineman drafted since Clenzie Pierson was taken by the Giants in the 11th round of the 1983 draft.
Hilliard was chosen with the Texans’ final pick in the seventh round (235th overall) of the draft. In four years at LSU, he played in 48 games (seven starts) and rushed for 1,547 yards and 27 touchdowns. His career touchdown total is tied for eighth in school history. Hilliard rushed for over 100 yards on four occasions, which included a career-best 141 yards on the ground in a 2012 game.
Following are the 2015 draft picks who the Houston Texans have signed:
Kevin Johnson CB 6-0 188 22 1 16 Wake Forest
Benardrick McKinney LB 6-4 246 22 2 43 Mississippi State
Jaelen Strong WR 6-2 217 21 3 70 Arizona State
Keith Mumphery WR 6-0 215 22 5 175 Michigan State
Reshard Cliett LB 6-2 222 23 6 211 South Florida
Christian Covington DT 6-2 289 21 6 216 Rice
Kenny Hilliard RB 5-11 226 23 7 235 LSU
HOUSTON – The Houston Texans have signed the following 16 rookie free agents:   
Jake Cotton G 6-6 305 23 R Nebraska
Kurtis Drummond S 6-1 208 23 R Michigan State
Brandon Ivory DT 6-4 308 22 R Alabama
Will Johnson P 6-2 206 22 R Texas State
Kendall Lamm T 6-6 305 22 R Appalachian State
Khari Lee TE 6-4 235 23 R Bowie State
Greg Mancz C 6-4 301 23 R Toledo
Mike McFarland TE 6-5 252 23 R South Florida
Cam McLeod DE 6-5 282 22 R Ohio
Dan Pettinato DE 6-4 277 23 R Arizona
James Rouse DE 6-5 271 24 R Marshall
Chad Slade G 6-5 315 23 R Auburn
Carlos Thompson OLB 6-5 243 23 R Mississippi
Lynden Trail OLB 6-7 269 24 R Norfolk State
Tony Washington OLB 6-4 247 22 R Oregon
Chandler Worthy WR 5-9 173 21 R Troy
Texans media web site: media.houstontexans.com
Texans PR on Twitter: @TexansPR 
Houston Texans on Twitter: @HoustonTexans
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