J.J. Watt has scored one more touchdown than Calvin Johnson and half as many as the Oakland Raiders. Is he the NFL’s Most Valuable Player?
For The Win gives us evidence that he could be. In Thursday’s game against the Indianapolis Colts, the Texans spotted the Colts a 24-0 lead. All Watt did was bat down three passes, record two sacks, score a touchdown on a fumble, and gave the Texans at least two opportunities to take the lead in the fourth quarter. Fumbles by Texans quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick and wide receiver Andre Johnson kept the Texans from completing the comeback.
Of Watt’s three touchdowns, two are defensive, meaning Watt has more defensive touchdowns than 28 teams in the NFL. His three batted passes are the most he has in a game for his career. Overall, Watt has 31 batted passes careerwise, seven more than the next closest player. If not Most Valuable Player numbers, they’re quite good.
Sports Illustrated adds that Watt also had seven tackles, three tackles for loss, two pass deflections, and a touchdown.
Amazingly, he could have had another touchdown on Thursday night too, but he failed to corral a wayward Luck screen pass.
“You absolutely have to be aware for where he is on the field — a lot of respect for the way that guy plays football, he’s a premier football player,” Luck said. “We knew our backs were going to help out, we were going to try to double him as much as we could.”
There are great players on other teams but none of those players are the team. There isn’t a single player more dominant. Take nothing away from guys named Manning, Brees, or Rodgers. If any of those players were to go down, their teams would be in dire straits. But all of those teams have a supporting cast strong enough to muddle through.
Without Watt, the Texans are a bad team. With Watt, Houston should find itself in the playoffs. Watt would make any good team a dynasty, and any great team all but unbeatable. Unfortunately, he’s on a team that’s a few fries short of a happy meal right now.
The Texans clearly knew this when signing Watt to a $100 million deal before the start of the season. They drafted Jadeveon Clowney to share the burden and keep offensive lines honest. But with Clowney out due to injury, the onus has remained on Watt, and Watt has delivered.
Watt continues to find ways to change games on both sides of the ball in a way no one else in the NFL can replicate. It’s an amazing thing to behold, and clearly an indispensable need for a struggling Houston team
[Image courtesy of 365 Rundown]