The Houston Texans should trade quarterback Deshaun Watson.
Like yesterday, already.
They should try to get a quarterback that only wants to be a quarterback and work hard everyday to be the best quarterback he can be. The idea that Watson wants to not only play QB, but help decide who his bosses will be is just a bad idea. And ultimately, it will send a franchise down the wrong path.
Reports are that Watson is unhappy that the team hired new general manager Nick Caserio without his input. Plus, he’s miffed that the franchise hasn’t interviewed Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy for its open head coaching gig.
Hence, some are saying Watson, 25, could ask for a trade. The hottest rumor has him potentially going to Miami in exchange for QB Tua Tagovailoa.
As talented as Watson is, a player making front-office decisions is a recipe for disaster. And as much as people want to say it’s about player empowerment and this is what big stars do in the NBA, the NFL just isn’t the NBA.
For sure, Watson has it twisted.
And for all the praise LeBron James gets, he’s won four championships in 17 years. That’s a .235 batting average if he was in the big leagues. It’s hardly impressive. Worse, teams can be left in ruins when you let a player overstep his boundaries. When James left Cleveland for L.A., he left the Cavs with bad deals for players LeBron wanted to sign on to play with him. The Cavs were left holding the bag after LeBron bounced for L.A., owing these players a ton of cash: J.R. Smith $15.6 million, George Hill $18 million, Jordan Clarkson $13.4 million and Tristan Thompson $18.6 million.
And as great of a player as James is, some call him the worst GM the NBA has seen in years.
Former Cavs GM David Griffin, who won a championship with James, described to Sports Illustrated last year that building a roster around James made him “miserable.” And, he added, the pressure of building a championship contender around James wasn’t enjoyable. In fact, he said the process was “inorganic” and “unsustainable.”
The NFL is just a different animal because it has a lot more moving parts. Most great players never have any say in hirings or personnel. The Packers fired Aaron Rodgers’ QB coach Alex Van Pelt in 2019. “I thought it was an interesting change — really without consulting me,” Rodgers said to the media about it.
Bill Parcells, a two-time winning Super Bowl coach, wanted to be coach and GM. It was the reason he left the New England Patriots after getting to the Super Bowl in 1996. Remember, he said if he’s cooking the meal, he should be buying the groceries. Parcells never won the Super Bowl when he had both jobs.
We get some of Watson’s frustrations. The Texans were bad from the jump this season and it cost GM/coach Bill O’Brien his gig (fighting with J.J. Watt didn’t help, either). The team went on to a 4-12 record and didn’t make the playoffs.
But the Texans have been a good organization, making the playoffs in four of the last six seasons. Most players and fans would take that in a heartbeat.
If reports are true, and Watson doesn’t have confidence in the leadership of the organization, he should have never signed that mega four-year, $156-million contract extension in September. There hasn’t been an ownership change since his huge pay day. If being a decision-maker was really the most important thing to him, he should have gotten it in writing. After all, his contract wasn’t just verbal, it’s a spelled-out legal agreement.
And what if Watson is in on the hiring of a GM and a coach and both are the wrong decisions, should Watson be broomed with the pair. And let’s be honest, what does Watson know about potential general manager candidates?
Often players are so focused on just playing the sport that they don’t know about the people around the game. They really have no clue about other guys’ backgrounds and credentials.
Ask the Detroit Lions, who so can’t get it right that they have one playoff win since 1957.
It’s hard for organizations to get it right. Now, Watson wants to muddy the waters and have a say.
This scenario isn’t worth the headache.