Houston Texans: J.J. Watt’s return back to the gridiron will start today

Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /

Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt has reportedly returned to practice, starting his journey back to the gridiron. What’s the latest on his recovery?

Houston Texans fans — it’s almost getting to that time where the playoffs will start and luckily, this team will be able to partake in such a festive event that will involve a lot of hard work.

The Houston Texans 23-20 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers got the team what they needed to accomplish to start what most regard as the “next season.”  They have not only clinched the AFC South but have secured a playoff berth for the 4th time over the past six seasons, all in the Bill O’Brien era.

The Houston Texans are still holding onto the No. 4 playoff seed in the AFC which would likely mean that they’d match up with the Buffalo Bills in the Wild Card round.  The Bills are a dangerous team and they have weapons on both sides of the football, notwithstanding that Josh Allen is a dual-threat quarterback.

I’d also imagine that Kevin Johnson is feasting at the opportunity to roast his former team so their objective could be to try to get the highest seed possible — likely the No. 3 — where a matchup with the banged-up but gritty Pittsburgh Steelers would be likely.

Regardless of what happens — the Houston Texans should be ready for any opponent and not be concerned about who they face.  You never know what can happen any given game so they must put their best foot forward and crush the competition.

Speaking of crushing it, the latest report from NFL Insider Ian Rapoport indicates that J.J. Watt has returned to practice and the Houston Texans have officially designated for him to return:

The rumors had been churning over the past few weeks about his return and it now looks imminent, likely meaning that he’d be ready for the team’s first playoff game the week after next.

It just wouldn’t make sense to have him play in their season finale, a Week 17 matchup against the Tennessee Titans as he’s most-needed to get past whomever they play first in the postseason.

His return marks an impressive recovery for a guy that’s been out since October with a torn pectoral

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injury.  But knowing Watt, this isn’t surprising as I’m sure it’s eating away at him that he’s not out there to be able to help his teammates.

He now will have that opportunity to do, even if his healing is not at 100 percent but good enough to contribute in some way.

If Watt were to re-injure himself, he could still have the same surgery and be ready to go for 2020 so although there’s some risk to this move, it’s not as much as you may think.

It’s all a matter of if Watt can handle the rigors of rehabilitation — we obviously know that he can — something that Andrew Luck bowed out to just before the start of this season.

But nonetheless, it’s terrific to hear this news and I’m wishing him nothing but best in his quest to get back on the field.

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He will be joining Angelo Blackson, Brandon Dunn, Charles Omenihu, Carlos Watkins and Joel Heath, who have filled-in admirably for him while he’s been out.  These guys will still be counted upon — with Heath likely being the odd man out in an imminent cut — to keep that defensive line as fierce as possible.

Watt has amassed 24 tackles — 15 solos — along with 4.0 sacks, four tackles-for-loss, 20 quarterback hits, three passes defensed, two fumble recoveries and one forced fumble through his first eight games this season before his injury.