The quarterback demanded a trade, but has so much pending litigation against him to where teams don’t know if he will be able to play all year or in the future.
Cutting him is not an option because of the money owed to him, so he is still with the Texans and made the team’s initial 53-man roster for the upcoming season.
As the Texans' initial 53-man roster has been set, QB Deshaun Watson remains on the active roster as his significant ongoing legal situations continues.
Notable Texans moves: waived WR Keke Coutee, TE Ryan Izzon and released QB Jeff Driskel, WR Alex Erickson, WR Chris Moore.
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) August 31, 2021
This is not a surprise, but puts the team in an odd spot.
A Likely Inactive
Tyrod Taylor and Davis Mills are the other two quarterbacks on the roster, with Watson sliding in as the elite third-string option.
Yet if he doesn’t want to play and the team can’t trade him, he should be inactive every week on gamedays.
So what if Taylor or Mills gets injured?
That will likely not change the situation as the Texans have one spot out of 53 devoted to a player who will likely not play at all this season.
This is an incredible waste of a spot, but there is no other real option for the team other than eating nearly $70 million in dead cap money.
Not trading him earlier in the offseason before all the allegations has come back to bite the franchise.
Other Available Options
Taylor is obviously not a dynamic option at the quarterback position.
Here are the #Texans roster moves that put them at their initial 53-man roster. As expected, there's no change with Deshaun Watson. He remains on the active roster. @SportsTalk790 pic.twitter.com/PAuR3LbyiR
— Adam Wexler (@AdamJWexler) August 31, 2021
Waiting until final cuts could have been the plan all along, however, it is possible the team is more than comfortable with Taylor and Mills for the entire season.
There is just no way of knowing.
The Texans are not projected to be very good and that may have been true even with Watson under center.
Finding a new identity is key in 2021.
Yet the reality of it all may just be the team tanking and drafting the next big thing at quarterback in 2022.
Head coach David Culley was thrust into an impossible situation and all he can do is try to be a steady leader for a team dealing with the biggest distraction in the NFL.
Seeing Watson on the sidelines every week is just going to be weird.