As the Deshaun Watson drama with the Texans continues to unfold, the league’s other 31 teams are surely paying close attention. There have been increasing reports that the two sides could be headed for divorce, as we heard over the weekend that many in Houston’s building believe Watson has played his last snap for the team.
We’re still in the very early stages, but it sounds like teams are beginning to circle in anticipation of a potential frenzy. Teams have already begun calling the Texans and inquiring about Watson, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports (Twitter video link). As Rapoport cautions, the Texans still haven’t budged or shown a willingness to engage in talks yet, and he also notes that Watson still hasn’t formally requested a trade.
Interestingly, Rapoport says to “keep an eye on” the Panthers in the event that Watson becomes available. He highlights new owner David Tepper’s bold approach, as well as the failure of Teddy Bridgewater to establish himself as the franchise guy this season. That would be a huge splash from Matt Rhule, and Rapsheet says if it reaches the point where the Texans shop Watson then Carolina should not be discounted.
It’s not surprising that teams are already making exploratory calls, and if Houston really does decide to trade Watson it could take a while for things to get sorted out because of the size of the package that would need to be coming back.
If Watson were to be dealt, it would take multiple first-round picks and likely solid players as well, at a minimum. We’ll keep you posted as we hear more on this ever-evolving situation.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.