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How The Texans Decided Deshaun Watson Was Their Guy

Albert Breer has the story of how Rick Smith came to believe Deshaun Watson was the franchise’s next quarterback.

CFP National Championship
Step one.
Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Meant to post about this late last week; my apologies for not doing so before today. Albert Breer sat down with Rick Smith after the 2017 NFL Draft and learned that the Texans’ infatuation with Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson was born of three separate interactions—Smith witnessing Clemson’s victory over Alabama in the national championship game, the organization’s interview with Watson at the NFL Scouting Combine, and finally, Watson’s visit to NRG Stadium shortly before the draft.

It’s a solid look into the general manager’s mindset, which makes it a quality read for any Texans fan. A brief excerpt from the piece about how Watson came across when he met with the Texans’ brass at the Combine:

Clemson’s offense has more pro elements in it than most people think. It’s a spread in that the quarterback takes the ball from the shotgun and usually there are three receivers on the field, but Watson had to read and throw from the pocket plenty. That said, there is a projection made here, so the 15-minute whiteboard session Watson had with the Texans staff mattered. How does he talk football?

“The fact that the guy had a command of what they were doing offensively, he was very intelligent, understood ball, knows that he’s got a lot to learn, was humble but confident, that was a good interchange,” Smith said. “That exchange of ideas, it was a good conversation. You could tell right away he was smart, he was humble, he knew football and knew he had to work to do and was willing to do it.”

Does the additional information about Rick Smith’s thought process affect how you view the Texans’ decision to trade up to grab the player they hope can be the solution to their quarterback problems for the next ten-plus years?