Being the best defensive player in the NFL isn’t enough for the Texans’ J.J. Watt. Now he wants to play on offense, too.
“I’ve been lobbying since day one,” Watt told the Houston Chronicle. “It hasn’t worked yet, so I don’t think it’s going to work anytime soon. But it’s [Coach Gary Kubiak’s] team.”
At first Watt’s desire to play offense was taken as something of a joke. But when you’re the reigning NFL Defensive Player of the Year, people listen.
“We might let him in there at some point,” Kubiak said with a smile. “But it’s not going to be anytime soon.”
Watt’s athletic ability is well-documented, and he began his college career as a tight end at Central Michigan. He switched to defense after transferring to Wisconsin, and his alma mater might help him earn a role in the Texans’ short-yardage offense which is also named the for the Badgers.
“We’ve talked about it, actually,” Kubiak said. “We talked about our Wisconsin package with him and Garrett (Graham) and (Owen Daniels) on the goal line. I don’t know what part fo the Wisconsin package (Watt) would play – we’ll see.”
The 6-5, 289-pound Watt has been known to catch footballs fired from a machine, just like the receivers do.
“It’s just about being an athlete,” Watt said. “Catching balls is fun. Just doing whatever you can to be an athlete, working on hand-eye coordination and the little things. It never hurts to be able to catch a football.”
Watt is hoping to join a small list of two-way players who made an impact on both sides of the ball…but the list is quite an impressive one that includes Bronko Nagurski (fullback/defensive lineman), Chuck Bednarik (linebacker/center), Sammy Baugh (quarterback/defensive back/punter), Red Grange (running back/defensive back), Lou Groza (tackle/kicker) and Jim Thorpe (any position you can name)…just to name a few.
Watt has done plenty to terrorize offenses. Now he’s starting to make defensive coordinators nervous.