For the first time in his career, future NFL Hall of Famer J.J. Watt is not a part of the Houston Texans. Following his release with the team, Watt is now looking for a new squad to join, and, as expected, there appear to be many suitors. One team interested in Watt’s services, though, would allow him to get his ultimate revenge on the Texans, the franchise that helped develop him into one of the best players in the NFL. That team is the Tennessee Titans, who may just be a few star defensive players away from becoming a real Super Bowl contender.
The Houston Texans released J.J. Watt
After going No. 11 overall in the 2011 NFL draft, J.J. Watt has since become one of the league’s best defensive players of all-time while playing with the Texans.
Watt has ultimately led the NFL in sacks twice in his career and has recorded 20.5 sacks in two different seasons. He has also recorded 16 sacks or more four times. This has all led to him racking up 101 total sacks in his career, and earning five Pro Bowl and five First-Team All-Pro selections. He has also won the Defensive Player of the Year award three times.
However, after a season where the Texans went from a playoff team to one of the worst teams in the league, Watt, one of the greatest players in franchise history, has since parted ways with Houston.
“I have sat down with the McNair family and I have asked them for my release, and we have mutually agreed to part ways at this time,” Watt said in a video he posted on Twitter, according to ESPN. “… I’m excited and looking forward to a new opportunity, and I’ve been working extremely hard. But at the same time, it is always tough to move on. And I just want you guys to know that I love you. I appreciate you. I appreciate the McNair family for drafting me and giving me my first opportunity in the NFL.”
Watt now has several teams interested in him, and he even tweeted that “free agency is wild.” One team that appears to be interested in Watt, though, is a team he knows pretty well.
The Tennessee Titans seem to be interested in the NFL legend
The Tennessee Titans had a successful 2020 campaign, as they went 11-5 and reached the playoffs. However, their defense was one of the worst in the NFL, as it allowed 27.4 points per game.
This has led to the Titans expressing interest in one of the greatest defensive players in NFL history.
According to NFL.com, Titans general manager Jon Robinson recently said to reporters that he has reached out to Watt’s representation. He also said that Watt’s decision on where to play is “early in the stages,” per NFL.com.
The Titans certainly need to upgrade their players on the defensive side of the ball, so reaching out to Watt is a no-brainer for them. However, is it a good decision for Watt?
J.J. Watt could get his ultimate revenge on the Houston Texans
It’s interesting that the Titans have reached out to Watt, as Watt has recorded more sacks on the Titans than any other team in his career. This, obviously, has a lot to do with the fact that the Titans and Texans are both in the AFC South, which is also why Watt would be able to get his ultimate revenge on the Texans by signing with the Titans. This would allow him to play the Texans twice a year.
Watt would also get a chance to really improve Tennessee’s defense and make the Titans one of the top Super Bowl contenders in the AFC. A big reason why the Titans struggled so much defensively in 2020 was because none of their players really got to the quarterback at a high rate. Harold Landry led the team in sacks and he only had 5.5. This came after the team signed Vic Beasley and Jadeveon Clowney last offseason, too, as neither of them played in more than eight games for the Titans in 2020. Beasley and Clowney also both failed to record a sack for Tennessee this past season.
So, Watt would not only get a chance to get revenge on the Texans by signing with Tennessee, but he would also get a chance to improve a defense and contend for a Super Bowl.
Will Watt go to the Titans, though? It’s hard to say for sure because he has many other great options. However, given the fact that the Titans have been to the playoffs in consecutive seasons, just went to the AFC Championship Game in 2019, and that they are in the same division as the Texans, may mean that they are as good an option as any for J.J. Watt.
Stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference