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Expansion Draft Wish List: Houston Dynamo

Any dynamic options from Houston?

2013 MLS SuperDraft Presented By Adidas Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

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The night before the MLS Expansion Draft on December 13, Darren Eales will be running through the available names in his head thinking about the possibilities for Atlanta United. Unless something drastic happens, one of those names likely won’t be of someone on the Houston Dynamo’s roster.

To be frank, their current assembled roster is a jumbled mess of veterans and unproven talent with a few bright spots in between. Without being too harsh on their team (they’re currently last in the Western conference), it’s not a pretty selection of players. Especially if these lists we’ve assembled come to fruition. Nevertheless, let’s talk about them. Here’s who we see them keeping and who they could dangle out as bait:

Projected Protected List

  1. Alex
  2. Jalil Anibaba
  3. Will Bruin
  4. Boniek Garcia
  5. David Horst
  6. Cristian Maidana
  7. Mauro Manotas
  8. Raul Rodriguez
  9. Collen Warner
  10. Andrew Wenger
  11. Sheanon Williams

Exempt Players

  1. Tyler Deric
  2. Christian Lucatero

Available Players

  1. Eric Alexander
  2. Yair Aboleda
  3. DaMarcus Beasley
  4. Calle Brown
  5. Keyner Brown
  6. Ricardo Clark
  7. Jose Escalante
  8. Kevin Garcia
  9. Agus
  10. Sebastien Ibeagha
  11. Rob Lovejoy
  12. Abdoulie Mansally
  13. Zach Steinberger
  14. Erick Torres
  15. Joe Willis

Potential Targets for Atlanta United: Eric Alexander, DaMarcus Beasley, Ricardo Clark

Jason: There is a reason Houston is in last place in the Western Conference this season, this roster needs some serious improvement. The Dynamo will have a busy offseason in trying to make some changes. Some of that remodeling could affect who is available in the Expansion Draft.

Although not definite, the Dynamo would likely try to get younger and could risk letting veterans DaMarcus Beasley and Ricardo Clark get chosen in the Expansion Draft. Neither one has many games left in their career, and could even decide to hang up the boots after this season, but their veteran leadership could be useful to an expansion team trying to put together a competitive showing in year one. Clark is especially attractive due to his Atlanta ties, and could be a great player to help transition to a coaching or management role when his playing career ends.

Eric Alexander is a versatile veteran who can simplify your depth chart by providing cover at quite a few different positions. The 28-year-old has played 177 games in his MLS career, standing out in 2013-14 with the New York Red Bulls as a consistent starter.

Long shots to consider are Joe Willis (tons of other goalkeepers to consider, but Willis is a good one), Abdoulie Mansally (over 100 games of MLS experience, still just 27 years old, left back), and Erick Torres (DP contract, needs to rebuild his career and this might not be the time to risk a draft pick on a reclamation project, now coming off an injury picked up on loan at Cruz Azul).

Rob: The tire fire that is the Houston Dynamo roster does boast a few useful players. Unfortunately, since they don’t have much depth, they’ll be able to protect pretty much off of them. However, David Horst is a bubble pick for the protected list. If he doesn’t get protected, he’d be a nice addition on the back line for either expansion side.

Now, out of the three players we have projected to be available for Atlanta, Ricardo Clark makes the most sense. While I don’t think he’s worth spending one of the five picks on, if he’s wanting to play another year in MLS, he’d be worth acquiring in some other fashion as a player who brings a veteran presence to what will likely be a young roster.

Eric Alexander has been successful in MLS as a utility man. I remember RBNY supporters being really bummed about losing him back in the day. He’s apparently fallen on hard times of later. At only 28, he could be a risk worth taking in hopes he recaptures some of his former glory.

I love DaMarcus Beasley. I became a USMNT fan when he was first entering the picture. But, he’s 34 years old and will be 35 next May. He’s just not someone who I’d want as a starting player at this stage of his career and I highly doubt he’d want to come to a brand new team to be a role player.

It’s not a rosy outlook for the Dynamo’s possible draft candidates. But, you just never know. Maybe Atlanta and/or Minnesota could surprise everyone and take a gamble or one of their outcasts.