Deshaun Watson is one of the NFL’s best young quarterbacks and ordinarily a player of his caliber wouldn’t be available under any circumstances. Although this is anything but an ordinary situation.
The Houston Texans star has had 23 lawsuits filed against him for allegations of “sexual harassment and sexual assault,” per Madeline Coleman of Sports Illustrated. Prior to these allegations, the three-time Pro Bowler had already requested a trade.
With the 2021 NFL season rapidly approaching, things have begun to heat up in the Watson sweepstakes.
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The Latest Inside Scoop
On Saturday afternoon, August 28, Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports revealed several key updates in the Watson situation.
The Miami Dolphins “have emerged as the frontrunner” and the other teams that have been involved — the Eagles, Carolina Panthers and Denver Broncos — have been stunted, in part, by Watson’s no-trade clause.
According to Robinson, Houston is looking for three first-round draft choices and a pair of second-rounders in return for their star quarterback. So far, no team has been willing to bite.
Obviously, a package of that magnitude would make any team think twice, but on top of that, there is a lot of uncertainty around Watson’s ongoing legal situation. What’s going to happen? Will he eventually get suspended by the league? Could there be any jail time?
With all of those unknowns, any team that would be trading for Watson wants some assurances built into the deal to protect themselves. Understandably Houston isn’t in favor of that and would rather make a deal straight up.
Things have started to heat up on the Watson front because it’s about to be decision time for Houston. On Tuesday, August 31, every NFL team will need to cut their roster from 80 to 53 players and the Texans have to figure out what they’re going to do with their star quarterback.
As we all know, pressure creates diamonds. Deadlines can often accelerate things and that very much seems to be the case with this potential trade. Pro Football Talk wrote on Saturday, “multiple league executives believe Watson will be traded in the coming days.”
Should the Eagles Pull the Trigger?
Philadelphia does have the necessary assets to pull off a deal of this caliber in the upcoming 2022 NFL draft:
- Two firsts (their own and Miami’s)
- Two seconds (their own and Indinapolis’ which could become a first)
Although as we discussed earlier, regardless of what they offer it might be out of their hands. Watson is one of the only players in the league that possesses a no-trade clause, which gives him full power and leverage in this situation. He gets to pick and choose where he goes.
Putting that aside for a moment, should the Eagles pull the trigger if everything else lined up?
This is a quarterback-driven league and Watson, from purely a football perspective, is one of the best in the game at just 25 years old. If he’s cut from the same cloth as some of his contemporaries, he could have his team in contention for the next decade or more.
Draft picks are like lottery tickets, you hope they can be half the player Watson is. The Houston Texans star is a proven commodity you know exactly what you’re getting.
Everyone that is currently in the mix has to ask themselves if they’re comfortable with all of the off-the-field baggage around Watson.
Right now the Eagles have a roster filled with unknowns. Jalen Hurts is an intriguing player, but his ceiling remains unknown. Joe Flacco, despite 175 career starts, is now 36 and trending in the wrong direction, while the newly acquired Gardner Minshew is presumably in the mix for a backup role.