Even though Houston Texans general manager Nick Caserio publicly stated that the franchise has no interest in “trading the player” known as Deshaun Watson, it seems highly unlikely that the two sides will ever reconcile their differences.
With rumors swirling about where the disgruntled quarterback could land in a trade, Stephen A. Smith recently offered his opinion on which NFL team should swing a trade for Watson.
Ironically, the team he selected recently invested a premium draft pick on the position. But with the opportunity to acquire an established star, perhaps that will change the equation.
Deshaun Watson has had it with Houston
No matter what has gone on around him, Deshaun Watson has continued to play at a high level. In fact, based on the circumstances of last season, you could argue that his 2020 campaign ranks as the best of his young career.
Although the Texans finished with an ugly 4-12 record, their star quarterback did everything in his power to avoid racking up losses. In his fourth NFL season, Watson set career-highs across the board. He led the NFL with 4,823 passing yards while throwing 33 touchdowns and just seven interceptions.
Yet, his Texans career appears to be over after only 54 games.
The 25-year-old recently requested a trade after he basically got ignored during the team’s search for a general manager and a head coach.
Instead of ensuring his most important player felt respected and appreciated, Houston owner Cal McNair has alienated Watson.
In return, the disgruntled QB completely erased any mention of the Texans from his social media accounts on Saturday. By taking that drastic step, Watson sent a clear message to his current team: He’s through with Houston.
And Stephen A. Smith knows exactly where the young NFL star should end up next.
Stephen A. Smith wants to see the Texans star get traded to an NFL team that just drafted a franchise quarterback
While Deshaun Watson does hold a no-trade clause, he shouldn’t think twice about waving that if one NFL team comes calling.
On a recent episode of ESPN’s First Take, Stephen A. Smith identified the Miami Dolphins as the team he wants to see Watson join.
“I love the idea of Chris Grier, an African-American GM, and Brian Flores, an African-American coach, with Deshaun Watson,” he explained. “Obviously, their defense is good. Their offense needs some additional weapons—we understand that. But I’m taking into consideration where he’s coming from with the Houston Texans.”
Of course, the Dolphins spent the fifth pick in the 2020 NFL draft on a quarterback of their own: Tua Tagovailoa.
The former Alabama star flashed exciting potential in limited action as a rookie. However, he carries durability concerns and has a long way to go to prove he deserves the “franchise quarterback” label.
Still, with the opportunity to land a proven star like Watson, should Miami think twice about trading Tua less than a year after making him the supposed face of the franchise?
Should the Dolphins get rid of Tua Tagovailoa in order to land a surefire superstar?
Stephen A. Smith wants to see Deshaun Watson end up with the Dolphins. But in order for that to happen, Miami will have to make a difficult decision about a player who has already become a fan favorite.
While we know what Watson is capable of, the same cannot be said of Tua. Sure, he showed elite playmaking ability at Alabama. And he definitely gave Dolphins fans something to cheer about (at times) during the 2020 season.
Yet, his ceiling remains a complete unknown. On one hand, he could become a left-handed version of Drew Brees. His accuracy, leadership, and underrated athleticism make him an intriguing prospect.
At the same time, his injury history and lack of size gave at least some NFL teams cause for concern about his ability to carve out a lengthy career. Can the 6-foot, 217-pound QB survive the physical toll of playing in the NFL?
Don’t forget that Tua does have a very affordable contract. He signed a four-year, $30 million contract, which pales in comparison to Watson’s four-year, $156 million extension he signed just a few months ago.
Clearly, there are many factors to consider for both teams. Does Houston think Tua can become a star? Will Miami want to give up valuable draft picks plus a QB who many expected to go No. 1 overall before he got hurt?
Let’s see how the situation plays out. But based on what the Dolphins can offer, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Stephen A. Smith’s wish come true.
All statistics courtesy of Pro Football Reference.