Last month, Deandre Hopkins was traded to the Arizona Cardinals, leaving Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson without his greatest weapon.
Head coach and general manager Bill O’Brien has come into a lot of criticism for this trade, especially for how little that they got back for Hopkins. Running back David Johnson was part of the trade but the Cardinals were looking to get rid of him anyway.
They also already have Duke Johnson at running back so it is not as if they are desperate in that area, especially when David Johnson could have been a free agent if the Texans had waited.
This trade now leaves the question as to what Deshaun Watson will do next and whether Bill O’Brien is wasting the career of the quarterback.
Not only did the Texans trade a huge amount of picks to get Laremy Tunsil, O’Brien also fell out with former first overall pick in linebacker Jadaveon Clowney.
The Texans have still not fixed their offensive line and Deshaun Watson will continue to get beat up by defences unless this changes.
He was sacked 44 times during the 2019 season and 62 times in 2018. This is far too many for one of the top five quarterbacks in the league to be enduring.
It is for reasons such as this which, in my opinion, explains why the Texans have failed to make it past the divisional round under Bill O’Brien.
Sven Goran Eriksson couldn’t get past the quarter finals with England in major tournaments with Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, David Beckham, Wayne Rooney, John Terry and Ashley Cole in the same squad.
In similar fashion, O’Brien has failed to make it past the divisional round with Clowney, JJ Watt, Hopkins and Watson at his disposal. I feel O’Brien is an average head coach who has got into the play offs due to the players rather than his coaching.
Don’t forget the luck of the Bears going for Mitch Trubisky instead of both Watson and Patrick Mahomes. O’Brien has recently defended his trade of Hopkins publicly over the wide receiver’s request for a raise.
Whilst I can see why you wouldn’t like a player wanting more money, sometimes you have to. This is especially so if they are arguably the best player in the league in their position.
They need to give their QB the best chances to succeed and having Hopkins but slightly less money at their disposal is surely worth it.
The fall out O’Brien has had with both Hopkins and Clowney reminds me of Adam Gase’s time at Miami.
Gase reached the play offs in the 2016 season with Miami with players such as Ajayi, Suh and Landry at his disposal. He fell out with all three of these players and never reached the play offs again with the Dolphins.
O’Brien is in danger of doing the same with the Texans and I would not blame Watson if he was to get out of Houston as quickly as possible. If he were to do so then the majority of teams would be queuing to get him.
The Kansas City Chiefs, Seattle Seahawks and Baltimore Ravens would not want to when they already have Patrick Mahomes, Russell Wilson and Lamar Jackson at their disposals.
I can guarantee the Saints would go for him with Brees in his 40s and the Cowboys would go for him with Dak Prescott yet to be seen as a good quarterback or a great quarterback.
Watson is a generational player who is arguably the best player in Texans history. They will find it tough to replace him if he were to leave.
The Texans may be able to get in the play offs with Watson but if he were to go then they would have no hope and this would be all down to Bill O’Brien for single handedly dismantling this squad.