J.J. Watt’s elbow was never 100 percent last season

AP

Texans defensive end J.J. Watt dislocated his left elbow in August, causing him to wear a bulky brace on his arm while turning in a season that made him the NFL Defensive Player of the Year.

Watt didn’t appear on the injury report as a result of that injury after the first two weeks of the season, but it wasn’t because Watt was totally healed. He told the Texans website this week that things never got totally back to normal in his elbow before the season came to an end.

“All the ligaments in there were torn, they were all gone, so they had to have time to recover and regroup. So obviously, I wasn’t at full strength. The brace helped a lot, but it was more of a mental thing, getting over the thought process of knowing that it was injured and making sure that I could still have confidence in it,” Watt said. “As the season went on, I got more and more confidence in it and obviously, it didn’t hinder me too much; I had some success out there. But (I’m) looking forward to a 100 percent full healthy season.”

Watt says that he’s feeling “great” now and hopes that the brace won’t be necessary during the 2013 season, which should make opposing offenses a bit nervous about the prospect of facing off with Houston. If Watt was able to put up the year he did at less than full strength, the encore should be pretty tough to stop.