UCLA offensive guard and former Timpview All-American lineman Su'a-Filo was the first prospect with Utah ties to get picked this year.
The 6-foot-4, 307-pound Su'a-Filo declared for the draft after his junior year with the Bruins. He started 19 games at tackle and 21 games at guard for UCLA, helping the program to a 10-3 record and a victory in the Sun Bowl. He was commonly evaluated as one of the top guard prospects leading into the draft.
Going at No. 33 overall, he became the highest-drafted lineman out of UCLA since Hall-of-Famer Jonathan Ogden in 1996. Houston is attempting to shore up an offensive line that gave up 42 sacks last year.
Looking into his situation, there's a lot to be excited about: He can't wait to block for Arian Foster, but he also is excited about playing on a team with defensive stalwarts J.J. Watt, Brian Cushing and new pick Jadeveon Clowney.
"These are guys I loved watching the last couple years," Su'a-Filo said. "I'm looking forward to getting in and playing for Coach [Bill] O'Brien. I'm hoping I can come in and compete right away."
As a high school athlete, Su'a-Filo helped lead Timpview to three consecutive 4A football titles between 2006 and 2008, winning 36 games in the process. He was an Under Armour All-American, a Parade All-American and one of the top lineman prospects in the country.
Su'a-Filo served a two-year LDS Church mission in Alabama and Florida while enrolled at UCLA.
Some of his best friends are from those great T-bird teams, and he said, and they all gave him a call. Even since his high school days, he's believed he could play in the NFL. Now he gets a chance to prove it.
"I just wanted to take it step by step, playing for Coach [Louis] Wong, playing at UCLA, and now I'm in Houston," he said. "I can't tell you how much it means to me, and now it's a reality."