The on-again, off-again Deshaun Watson trade rumors are on again. Again. Kinda.
A report out of Houston suggesting the Texans and Dolphins were nearing a deal that would send the quarterback to Miami as early as the end of this week put us on extreme-Watson watch. But perhaps the imminent nature of this deal was a bit premature. Reporting from The Athletic’s Jeff Howe and Adam Reiss brings more clarity and additional details to earlier news.
So … What’s up with the Dolphins?
The duo shares that while discussions are “serious” on the matter of trading Watson, no deal is imminent. And that if the Dolphins were the team cutting the deal, it wouldn’t come with Tua Tagovailoa, because Houston hasn’t shown interest in acquiring the Dolphins QB. In fact, Tagovailoa’s name reportedly hasn’t even come up in trade discussions.
A Watson-to-Miami deal would always have complications, particularly when it comes to Miami needing to deal its incumbent starter in the first place. So, perhaps with that in mind, the Dolphins angle isn’t the only one the Texans are exploring.
Are other teams involved?
In addition to Miami, Houston is reportedly trying to get other teams involved in the bidding. The Athletic name-checks the Eagles and Panthers as teams having recent discussions about a Watson trade. If you’ll recall, one report had the Eagles nearing a deal with the Texans in August. Later that month, another instance of a reporting was hinting at the Dolphins being a top suitor in a possible Watson deal. Obviously, no deal was struck in either case. But that we’re still discussing this group of teams as possible suitors feels like a Texans’ push to use a deadline and multiple teams to cut the best deal for its franchise.
It’s almost as if floating the Dolphins as a suitor and potential immediacy was done in an attempt to nudge other potential parties with interest that now was a good time to speak up and come through with a strong offer.
What would an offer even look like?
Reiss and Howe share the Texans have been asking for three first-round picks, plus more. The more could be a collection of picks, players, or some combination of picks and players. Or, to put it in another way, the same as it ever was.
Newfound clarity regarding possible landing spots and the cost of doing business makes it feel like a trade is more likely now than before. And yet, Watson still faces numerous allegations sexual misconduct. This cannot be overlooked when it comes to trade possibilities. Additionally, there are also complaints that have been field with Houston police, as well was an ongoing NFL investigation. In other words, there are obvious hurdles that still remain before a deal can be ironed out. And even with a deadline looming and reports of interested teams, pushing a deal across the finish line won’t come easy.