Former Clemson and current Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson had his rookie season ended prematurely, suffering a torn right ACL in practice in December 2017.
The quarterback’s motivation to get back on the field, and overcome yet another setback, has shown through his relentless rehab. And according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, the results are already clear, with Watson ahead of schedule on his return to the field.
#Texans coach Bill O’Brien says QB Deshaun Watson is ahead of schedule in ACL rehab and could be on the field throwing for OTAs. Probably not in team periods but in individuals.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 27, 2018
This is good and bad news.
While it’s fantastic that Watson is so motivated to return to the field, he’s ahead of schedule and apparently feeling well enough for this to leak to the media, it’s a scary prospect for the 22 year old franchise quarterback.
We’ve seen what premature returns can do to an NFL player’s career (See: Robert Griffin III). It doesn’t sound like Houston has plans to throw Watson to the fire, but they’ll want to be extra cautious.
Watson has, however, experienced this sort of injury only to recover incredibly quickly before. In college, he tore his left ACL and returned in just five months with no real issues.
As a rookie, Watson played in seven games and started six of them, going 3-3 as starter for the Texans. He threw for 1,699 yards, 19 touchdowns and 8 interceptions.
With a healthy Watson leading the way, Houston could be gunning for an AFC South crown.