This time last year, Deshaun Watson was leading an epic comeback against Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills to win the Houston Texans a playoff game and head on to the second round. Less that 365 days later, Watson and Houston seem like they're heading for a brutal breakup.
Watson is "extremely unhappy" with the Texans following conversations with ownership and the hiring of General Manager Nick Caserio, reported Ian Rapoport. With the Texans heading for a retool, if not a rebuild, questions have been raised about if, and where, the Texans could trade Watson. The cost would likely be, at least, multiple first round picks but there are sure to be many teams interested in the All Pro QB.
Watson Potential Trade Destinations:
5. New England Patriots
Trading multiple first round picks for a flashy quarterback would seem like the least Bill Belichick move imaginable, but the post-Tom Brady Patriots are a new team, with a new direction. Drafting a second-tier QB and developing him into a future Hall of Famer may be Belichick's preference, but acquiring Watson for a handful of picks would instantly turn the Patriots back into Super Bowl contenders once many of their COVID-19 opt-outs return in 2021.
4. Miami Dolphins
With two 2021 first-round picks (including one in the top five) the Dolphins could shock the football world by moving on from their 2020 first rounder, Tua Tagovailoa, and acquiring Deshaun Watson. Tagovailoa was decent in 2020, but was benched several times in the season and fell short of the NFL playoffs by losing a blowout affair to the Bills in Week 17.
Could a package centered around Tagovailoa and multiple first round picks be enough to leverage the Texans for Watson?
3. New York Jets
So, basically the entire AFC East could be interested in Deshaun Watson. The Jets will turn over a significant portion of their roster and leadership this season and they will, barring a surprise, have change at the QB position as well. Though a draft pick (likely Justin Fields or Zach Wilson) is the most likely replacement for Sam Darnold, the Jets have the significant draft capital needed to fetch Watson.
2. Washington Football Team
Dwayne Haskins is, clearly, not part of Ron Rivera and the Football Team's future, but likely neither are the aging Alex Smith or any of the other QB options currently on the team.
The Football team have one of the best defenses in the league this season and they won't have a high enough draft pick to select an impact QB due to making the playoffs. Trading for a veteran, or a Pro Bowler in his prime like Watson, would make a lot of sense for Washington's window and needs.
1. San Francisco 49ers
The Jimmy G trials in San Francisco started off perfectly. Garoppolo started off with a lengthy win streak that earned him a massive pay-day before he really showed the 49ers what he had. Despite regressing to an elite game-manager in future seasons, Garoppolo lead the Niners to a Super Bowl that they nearly won. What has become clear, is that there is room for improvement for San Fran at the QB position, and with a limited penalty for buying out Garoppolo's contract this season, the 49ers could mortgage their draft future to upgrade massively at QB and capitalize on their Super Bowl core.
Honorable mention: Denver Broncos, Indianapolis ColtsPublished 09 Jan 2021, 01:53 IST