The Houston Texans had high hopes for the 2016 season after a slew of signings in the off-season and looked to improve a roster that won the AFC South in 2015 with four different starting quarterbacks. That may all come crashing down as the NFL Network’s Ian Rapaport reports that Texans star defensive lineman J.J. Watt has re-injured the back injury that kept him out of the preseason and now may miss the rest of the season.
The three-time Defensive Player of the Year had surgery for a herniated disc in his back in July and had to be placed on the PUP list, essentially ending his preseason and training camp before they even started. Watt made it back to the team in time for their Week 1 victory over the Bears, and even recorded two sacks in their Week 2 win over the Chiefs. But hasn’t looked like his true self throughout the first three games of the season, and some have wondered if Texans and Watt — who has never missed a game in his career — would have been better off waiting to bring him back.
The 2-1 Texans still lead the AFC South, but their new quarterback Brock Osweiler has been erratic and it appears they will have to lean on their defense to make a return to the playoffs. Now they may have to do so without Watt all year, and even if former No. 1 overall pick Jadeveon Clowney comes to form Watt will be irreplaceable on the Houston defensive line.