Kevin Stefanski doesn’t know whether rust will be a factor for Deshaun Watson

Chicago Bears v Cleveland Browns
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Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson last played a regular-season game in January 2021, with the Texans. He now returns to action by facing the Texans. In Houston.

Although Watson wasn’t available to the media on Wednesday, coach Kevin Stefanski was. Stefanski was asked whether he thinks Watson will be shaking off any rust on Sunday.

“It is a totally fair question,” Stefanski said. “I don’t think I can predict that type of thing, but I know this, he is focusing on his work. Really in any endeavor, you have to focus on your preparation for Sunday. You can’t really worry about Sunday until you worry about Wednesday.”

Preparation is a key word. Especially since that’s the word to which Stefanski pointed when addressing whether Watson’s struggles in limited preseason work against the Jaguars were related to stress.

“No, I really don’t,” Stefanski said. “I think a lot of that was just getting back in uniform, in the huddle, hearing my voice in the headset and those type of things. That was all about the preparation. No, I don’t put much stock on that.”

So does Stefanski think those preparation factors be an issue on Sunday?

“I don’t,” he said.

Stefanski also was asked how the Browns will handle any fan backlash in Houston.

“Again, I think it goes back to control what you can control,” Watson said. “We have to have a great week of practice and be ready to play a great game on Sunday.”

And Watson has proven to be a great player. Stefanski was asked whether Watson’s mobility and his overall ability to run with the ball will open up opportunities for the team’s running backs.

“I really think it is wait and see,” Stefanski said. “There is plenty of tape of Deshaun out there so the Texans know what to prepare against, so to speak, but he hasn’t played for us so there is an element of ‘we will see.’”

Indeed we will. The game itself isn’t significant because neither team is very good. But, after all these months and all those lawsuits and everything else that has happened, Watson will finally be back on Sunday. It will be very interesting to see how it all goes.

9 responses to “Kevin Stefanski doesn’t know whether rust will be a factor for Deshaun Watson

  1. Browns have Chubb and Hunt and a mauling offensive line going against maybe of the of the worst run defenses of the last decade.

  2. I always wondered how an 11 game rather than 10 or 12 game suspension was determined. No way Deshaun wanted to make his Browns debut in Houston against the team he gave up on and have alleged victims show up for whatever reason they are. No way the Browns cared if he started this game. The only logical thing to me is his camp is accounting for rust, does not want to look bad after this summer. He will be rusty, but no way he bombs against the Texans.

  3. This is Houston’s Superbowl. They’ll be keyed up and ready to play. There’s a decent chance the Browns will want to see wat he can do and will forget to rely on a dominant running game. That’s generally how they have managed to blow winnable games over the past couple of years.

  4. Sure, he’ll be rusty, but a “rusty” Watson is better than any of the well-oiled Browns’ QBs since 1999*. Actually, maybe even since Otto Graham.

    (* with the exception of 2020. Mayfield had a good year: a rusty Watson might not be better than that. A well-piled Watson certainly is).

  5. Rust? How about karma? Or ethics? Or amoral behavior? He and the Browns deserve to flame out in spectacular fashion.

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