Houston Texans rookie QB Deshaun Watson got his first start in the second game of the season, and he made a spectacular play that ended up being the difference in earning his team a victory.
This is exactly why the Texans drafted the Clemson superstar. He was inconsistent in college but you could always count on him to step up in the big moments. He dominated Alabama‘s historically great defense in the National Championship twice, earning a major upset victory this past January.
While the run is only the second of two touchdown drives he has led in six quarters this season, you can see his teammates rallying behind the kid. You have to give it up to him when just a couple of plays before he got smashed by Pro Bowl defensive tackle Geno Atkins.
He also made several plays that only veteran quarterbacks make in a crucial drive in the fourth quarter. The Texans got the ball back with 8:20 remaining, up by one, needing any kind of score to force the Bengals to score a touchdown to win.
On a 2nd-and-20 deep in his own territory, Watson recognized zero coverage and anticipated a throw to DeAndre Hopkins up the seam. Pacman Jones had no choice but to take down Hopkins with pass interference as the play certainly would have been a long touchdown.
On 3rd-and-7 from his own 28, he calmly found Hopkins for a nine-yard gain, anticipating the throw beautifully.
On 3rd-and-16 from the Bengals’ 35, he stepped up in the pocket, scrambled out of a sure sack, gained 11 yards and set up a much easier field goal attempt that was hit by Ka’imi Fairbairn.
These aren’t supposed to be plays a rookie makes in an extremely high pressure situation. Rather than stay conservative and most likely end up punting, the coaching staff gave Deshaun Watson a chance to bring it home, and man did he deliver.
There absolutely is work to be done, but Bill O’Brien found his starting quarterback and should absolutely keep him in the lineup moving forward.