The good news for the 2018 Texans is that quarterback Deshaun Watson will have the full benefit of the preparation that comes from being the starting quarterback throughout training camp and the preseason. The bad news is that, when it comes to the offseason program, Watson’s activities will be much more limited, due to a torn ACL suffered in November.
“I like where he is right now,” coach Bill O’Brien said during Wednesday’s PFT Live, regarding Watson’s rehab efforts. “I don’t think that he’ll be able to do much on the field in the beginning of the offseason program. He’ll be working with the trainers on the field, but not with us. . . . I think by the time OTAs roll around he may be able to do a few things with the team. We’re going to incorporate him into some of the things we’re doing during Phase Two and make sure everybody’s around him and he’s around everybody else. We’re not going to rush it. Obviously, training camp is the ultimate goal for him, to be in there during training camp. I do feel like by the end of the spring he’ll be able to do a few things with the team.”
Making Watson’s involvement in the offseason program more important is that O’Brien plans to implement a new offense, one that is even better suited to Watson’s skills. Given the speed with which he picked up last year’s offense after he was abruptly thrust into the starting role, any advance preparation should serve only to make him better than he was as a rookie — and as a rookie he was beyond great.