The recent trend of superstars leaving the city of Houston has been mind-boggling. In the NBA, both Russell Westbrook and James Harden departed for the Eastern Conference. In the MLB, Gerrit Cole signed a long-term deal with the New York Yankees. With the Houston Texans specifically, we have already seen a disgruntled DeAndre Hopkins head to the Arizona Cardinals in a trade.
With the recent reports of Deshaun Watson requesting a trade, the Texans are expected to comply and seek out trade suitors. Who is the best suited candidate? Here are four legitimate options:
4. Washington Football Team (+1000)
The Washington Football Team may have secured the NFC East title last season, but it didn’t come without a fair share of misfortune. The team saw four quarterbacks under center at one point, with Alex Smith receiving a bulk of the playing time. Dwayne Haskins is out of the picture and with the Pittsburgh Steelers, and there is an obvious need for the future at the quarterback position.
Washington holds the #19 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, leaving out most first-round quarterback talents from their immediate reach. There could be other options in free agency, such as Dak Prescott or Jacoby Brissett, but nothing is a guarantee.
Trading for a player of Watson’s caliber would ideally place Washington back in the driver’s seat for back-to-back division titles next season.
3. Denver Broncos (+850)
The AFC West has been predominantly run by Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs as of late, but adding Watson to the mix would be exciting. The Broncos already have Drew Lock on their roster, but he becomes a free agent by the end of the 2021 season. Last year, Lock went 4-9 as a starter with 16 touchdowns to 15 interceptions.
The Broncos still have potential on their offense, with young weapons in Jerry Jeudy, Cortland Sutton, and Tim Patrick making up the wide receiver core. With Melvin Gordon in the backfield and on a contract year, it would be smart to use the 2021 season as one to go all-in.
2. Miami Dolphins (+350)
The Houston Texans and Miami Dolphins have been linked as rumored trade suitors before, as some believe Tua Tagovailoa may not be the answer. That could very well be true, considering 38-year old Ryan Fitzpatrick outplayed Tagovailoa at certain points throughout the 2020 campaign.
If the Texans’ asking price for Watson is as high as we think it could be, then Miami has the assets to complete a blockbuster trade. Most believe it will take Tagovailoa, in addition to draft capital, to move on from their quarterback. Still, the addition of Watson places the Dolphins in an interesting spot when it comes to the AFC East for years to come.
1. New York Jets (+250)
We learned that Deshaun Watson prefers a trade to the New York Jets, so will the Texans comply? Sam Darnold went 2-10 last season as a starter, yet the Jets couldn’t find a way to grant themselves the #1 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. While the roster isn’t built for success at this time, Watson would be a great first building block.
The hiring of new head coach Robert Saleh has been one of the many highlights of this NFL offseason, and certainly plays a role in Watson’s desire to represent New York. There is no details as to what the Texans would seek in return, but it likely will involve the #2 selection in the 2021 Draft.