If we could summarize the last few days of NFL headlines into one satirical headline, it would be “Spotted: NFL Training Camp Edition”.
Keeping tabs of who shows up and who has yet to arrive gives fans something to talk about before the real work of preparing for an NFL season begins.
Due to name value and the immense talent he brings to the field, Watson’s actions will take on a greater importance as we try to figure out what the future holds for him.
At the end of the day though, his arrival to Texans training camp is not much of a news story at all.
We’ll go into a few reasons why it’s inconsequential in a moment, but Watson’s presence is interesting at the very least.
It’s possible that a reported $50,000 daily fine would have been levied on the quarterback had he decided to miss camp was a significant motivating factor in getting him to report.
But it’s intriguing that Watson, who has made his desire to leave Houston abundantly clear to the front office, showed up on the very first day of camp.
He could have dragged things out, made a spectacle, and avoided unnecessary practice reps that could put his health in harm’s way.
Watson’s Presence At Training Camp Is Immaterial
Without delving too much into Watson’s rationale for this decision, it ultimately doesn’t matter that he decided to show up.
His trade stock, which is one of the hottest topics in league circles, won’t be defined by his summer workouts in a T-shirt and shorts.
Even if he decided to hold out for the remainder of July and entirety of August, his ability to play the game at a superstar level would not be heavily questioned.
Of course, what will be the main driver of Watson’s trade value across the NFL is his availability for the 2021 season, and perhaps beyond.
The legal details factoring into the equation continue to spill out after a few months of relative quiet on that front, but it’s anyone’s guess as to how this situation will play out.
It seems like a foregone conclusion that Watson will be forced to miss a minimum of six games, and there appears to be a strong chance that he will end up sidelined for most if not all of this season.
The league’s decision on this matter will have enormous ramifications on the inevitable trade negotiations the Texans will be forced to have.
As it relates to Houston and the players/staff who will try to make the best of this season, Watson’s presence also means very little.
New head coach David Culley will be focused on establishing a new culture with the team, and attaching himself to a quarterback who seems destined to skip town won’t be the best use of his time.
Hello #Texans fans, I’m very excited for this opportunity! Let’s get it!
— David Culley (@DCulley69) January 28, 2021
Deep down, the players and coaching staff probably realize that it’s best to focus on who will actually be available for their Week 1 game against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Sliding into the 4th weekend… pic.twitter.com/tLvYRN2T8p
— David Johnson (@DavidJohnson31) July 2, 2021
Feeding veteran quarterback Tyrod Taylor all the reps he can handle to prepare has to be the main priority in the building.