Commentary: Texans find gem in rookie sensation
It took 15 years and almost as many quarterbacks to finally give Texans owner Bob McNair the face of his franchise.
After a record-breaking performance by rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson in the Texans 57-14 victory over the Tennessee Titans last Sunday, the Houston Texans can officially say they don’t have a problem.
Watson has dazzled during his time as the Texans’ starting quarterback, leading the team to a 2-1 record. It seems the Clemson prodigy has a knack for the spectacular, and after a historic collegiate career with the Tigers that placed his name atop numerous school records, the young quarterback didn’t take long to do the same at the professional level.
The 6-foot-3-inch quarterback is just two years removed from throwing 4,104 yards and 35 touchdowns, along with 1,105 rushing and 12 touchdowns on the ground. Watson has proven that, when healthy, he can be dynamic on the field.
He is the first rookie in NFL history to produce seven or more passing touchdowns paired with two or more rushing touchdowns in a four-game stretch. He is also the second player since Fran Tarkenton to post over 250 yards with four passing touchdowns and a rushing score in a single game.
His five-touchdown performance against the Titans placed him behind Gale Sayers’ 52-year-old rookie record of six scores in a single outing. The outstanding effort landed Watson AFC Offensive Player of the Week honors.
Watson’s play has been spectacular, and what’s even more promising is the growth he’s shown. The rookie quarterback has improved his quarterback rating, passing percentage and touchdown output with each game this season.
The offensive line has also stepped up its play by allowing fewer sacks each time out. This can be big for a first-time NFL quarterback that needs all the help he can get. The defense looked dominant against Tennessee, holding the Titans scoreless for three quarters. Houston didn’t allow a single point in the second half and forced five turnovers in the game.
This dominance in addition to Watson’s breakout game leaves hope for a season worth watching after expecting the worst with Tom Savage behind center. With the team firing on all cylinders, there is a legitimate chance of returning to the playoffs for a third straight season.