The reporters are still hearing that the Dolphins are the “most likely landing spot” for Watson, as he would reportedly prefer to play in Miami and the Dolphins have expressed interest in him.
People close to the situation have told Fowler and Graziano that they believe Watson would be in Miami already if the lawsuits had never surfaced.
Another team that has reportedly been intrigued with Watson, according to ESPN, is the Broncos.
There was also some buzz about the Eagles having interest in Watson, given that they could have three first-round picks to work with next year. Although, Fowler and Graziano say they haven’t been able to find a credible source who believes Watson wants to play in Philadelphia. They do clarify that this doesn’t mean he wouldn’t play for the Eagles, but it appears as though Philadelphia is the top team to watch.
Depending on what happens with the Steelers, Seahawks, Saints and Washington, the ESPN reporters believe they could be in play for Watson. Other hypothetical teams tossed out by the ESPN duo include the Packers, Giants, Raiders, Lions and Panthers, depending on how their respective quarterback situations play out from here on.
Houston is reportedly seeking a large package of picks and/or players for Watson and Fowler and Graziano write that Houston has offered no indication that they plan to move off of their asking price.
In terms of making a trade right now, a team would need to have around $7 million of available cap space to pay Watson’s salary for the remainder of the season. This number drops to $5.86 million if he’s traded at the deadline.
The odds of a team happening next year seem much higher, as there could be more clarity regarding Watson’s legal situation stemming of the serious allegations of sexual assault and inappropriate behavior made against him. Watson is still facing 22 civil lawsuits, but has denied any wrongdoing.
Either way, it would still be difficult for a team to meet the Texans’ asking price for Watson until there is some clarity regarding his legal situation and the possibility of the NFL handing down some kind of suspension.
Last we heard regarding Watson, Jay Glazer of FOX Sports reported a few weeks ago that the Texans’ stance has started to soften a bit and are now more open to trading Watson than they have been throughout the year.
Houston wasn’t fielding trade inquiries throughout the offseason for Watson, even though he had requested a trade and made it clear that he wasn’t going to play for them again.
Glazer mentioned that the Texans have already been offered three first-round picks and three third-round picks for Watson, but they had been holding out for an even better deal.
Watson, 26, was taken in the first round of the 2017 NFL draft out of Clemson by the Texans. He signed a four-year, $13.854 million with the Texans that included a fifth-year option around $17.3 million for the 2021 season.
The Texans signed Watson to a four-year deal worth as much as $177 million heading into the 2020 season, paying him $39 million a year.
In 2020, Watson appeared in all 16 games for the Texans and completed 70.2 percent of his passes for 4,823 yards with 33 touchdowns and seven interceptions. He also rushed for 444 yards and three touchdowns.
We’ll have more on Watson as the news is available.