AP NEWS

Deshaun Watson finally gets his moment at the NFL Draft

April 28, 2017

Heading into Thursday night’s NFL Draft, there was a lot of discussion surrounding this year’s quarterback class and how it may be one of the worst since the 2013 class, which featured both E.J. Manuel and Geno Smith, each colossal flops.

Unlike the 2013 class, the 2017 class saw three quarterbacks go within the top 12 picks. North Carolina’s Mitch Trubisky went second overall to the Chicago Bears, Texas Tech’s Patrick Mahomes II to the Kansas City Chiefs with the 10th overall pick, and finally Clemson’s Deshaun Watson to the Houston Texans with the 12th overall pick.

While the two quarterbacks who went in front of Watson saw their stocks rise tremendously over the past few months, Watson’s stock sort of flatlined. It was puzzling to see as many mock drafts had Watson going somewhere between the top-5 and as late of the 20s.

Nevertheless, that did not discourage the former Heisman Trophy winner and National champion as he was happy to be a Houston Texan on draft night.

“I feel great. This has been a blessing. It’s a great opportunity for me and my family. This is surreal,” Watson said.

Watson now walks into a unique situation with the Texans as he is joining a team who made the playoffs last season and has a pretty stout defense to play behind led by defensive end J.J. Watt. He also has a ton of playmakers on offense at his disposal such as running back Lamar Miller and wide receivers DeAndre Hopkins, Will Fuller and Braxton Miller.

Not to mention, he will have a chance to win the Texans’ starting quarterback job competing against veterans Tom Savage and Brandon Weeden.

However, Watson’s main focus is just to learn the offense and do his job as the team’s quarterback.

“My main focus is to get in and try to learn as quick as I can and play my role.”

In his final season at Clemson, Watson completed 67 percent of his passes for 4,593 yards, 41 touchdowns and 17 interceptions. He also had 629 rushing yards and nine touchdowns on the ground.

Watson is a competitor and leader plus brings a different style of quarterback play to the Texans that they have not had in their entire franchise history. The last time the Texans drafted a quarterback in the first round was David Carr in 2002 with the first overall pick.

While the Carr era was not a success, the Watson era looks to be promising as he has a chip on his shoulder, but is also thankful that Houston believed in him enough to trade up and draft him.