In four days, the window on all trades closes until March 16. Will the Texans, before 4:00 p.m. ET on Tuesday, trade quarterback Deshaun Watson?
The Dolphins have become the focal point of trade talks, with Watson choosing to waive his no-trade clause only for Miami. (The Panthers had been a possibility, even if they’ve been putting out the word that they never were.) At this point, barring something entirely unexpected, it will be the Dolphins or no one.
So here’s the question, and it’s a fair one to ponder at this point. Will the two sides be able to land the plane?
There’s an art to making a trade like this happen. At some point, both teams have to agree to terms. Both teams must turn the key. Both teams must make the appropriate communication to the league office.
Remember when the Bengals tried to trade A.J. McCarron to the Browns and it didn’t happen? All it takes is one accident (or “accident”) to block a final deal. A dash of dysfunction from either side can prevent consummation, even if everyone involved wanted to make it happen.
In this case, the Texans want to trade Watson. Watson wants to be traded to Miami. And Miami wants Watson. But that’s not enough to get things done.
At this point, there’s no reason to do it today or tomorrow. (Watch, they’ll now do it today or tomorrow.) As the Texans prepare to face the Rams and the Dolphins prepare to travel to Buffalo for a game against the Bills, neither team needs the distraction.
From Houston’s perspective, there’s another reason to delay finalizing the trade until the deadline. With the Texans playing the Dolphins in Week Nine, the later the deal gets done the less of an opportunity Watson will have to be ready to make his debut against his former team.
Both franchises have made plenty of missteps in recent years. While they managed to accomplish the Laremy Tunsil trade in September 2019, the Texans have new management. Whoever is calling the shots for the Texans needs to get on the phone with whoever is calling the shots in Miami, strike a deal, and check all necessary boxes required to finalize the transaction.
They have four days to make it happen.