Deshaun Watson Trade Rumors: How They Got Here, and How to Fix It

Deshaun Watson Trade

Deshaun Watson trade rumors are scouring the internet right now, as the quarterback and his franchise are clearly not on good terms. While John McClain reports that the odds of a Watson trade are nonexistent, the fact remains that there is a lot of tension between ownership and quarterback. Let’s take a look at what happened between these two sides, how the tensions can be resolved, and what happens if the sides can’t find even ground.

Deshaun Watson Trade Rumors: How the Fracture Occurred

What Went Wrong

Deshaun Watson is the face of the Houston Texans, and the success of the team rests in his hands. In today’s pass-happy league, there is no resource more valuable than an elite starting quarterback. However, Houston has made several moves over the past year or so that have caused Watson to lose trust in the organization.

Last summer, then-head coach Bill O’Brien traded superstar wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins to the Arizona Cardinals for essentially nothing. Quarterbacks never like it when they lose their best weapons, but the team didn’t even tell Watson that the move was coming.

The firing of Bill O’Brien left the Texans in the need of a new head coach and general manager. As the future of the franchise, Deshaun Watson wanted to put in his two cents on a potential move, and ownership reportedly agreed to hear his suggestions.

While the quarterback obviously didn’t expect the team to make a move based solely on his suggestions, he wanted an input. Instead, owner Cal McNair hired Nick Caserio without consulting Watson or interviewing the candidates Watson recommended. This led to Watson tweeting out his frustration, and he has yet to be in contact with the team.

This wasn’t the only example of ownership completely ignoring Watson. According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Watson wanted Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy to interview for the head coaching job. This was not an unusual request, as every other team with a head coaching vacancy interview Bieniemy. The Texans, however, never requested an interview with the offensive coordinator, leading to even more distrust between Watson and the front office.

How It Can Be Fixed

Watson has already established himself as a top 5-10 quarterback in football, and he’s only entering his age-25 season. The Texans have every reason in the world to make Watson happy and make him feel like a valuable part of the organization.

The first thing they can do is include Watson in the hiring process. Nick Caserio is already onboard, and the organization wouldn’t fire him just days after making the announcement. Additionally, Schefter reports that Watson has no problems with Caserio himself, just the process that led to his hiring. Chances are, firing Caserio won’t actually mend the relationship between quarterback and team.

However, it’s not too late to include Watson’s opinion in the search for a head coach. While Houston has conducted a few interviews, they have yet to announce a new coach. It’s not too late for the Texans to request an interview with Eric Bieniemy, or anyone else Watson may have recommended. Again, this doesn’t mean Houston has to hire Bieniemy, but they should give him a fair shot at the job.

This is only the first step of many that the Texans need to make to re-establish trust with their quarterback. Overall, the front office needs to accept that Watson is the future of this franchise, and his voice carries a lot of weight. This goes for both Caserio and McNair, as both men are bound to Watson for the forseeable future.

What A Deshaun Watson Trade Could Look Like

On paper, the Houston Texans have an easy way to regain the trust of their quarterback. However, this is the Texans we’re talking about, so there is a decent chance they mess it up. If they do, they’ll have no choice but to trade Watson to the highest bidder. Houston should have no shortage of suitors, but what would it take to acquire the up-and-coming passer?

In recent years, the price for a non-quarterback superstar appears to be two first-round picks. After all, that’s what the Bears, Rams, and Seahawks gave up for Khalil Mack, Jalen Ramsey, and Jamal Adams, respectively. Quarterback is obviously more important that defensive end or defensive back, so the cost to acquire Watson will be larger than any of the aforementioned players. Additionally, Watson already signed a long-term contract, whereas Mack, Ramsey, and Adams all had expiring deals.

Because of this, we can conservatively estimate Watson’s trade value as approximately four first-round picks, or some equivalent value thereof. This obviously sounds like a lot, but it’s a price worth paying for a team that is only a quarterback away from competing.

One such team is the San Francisco 49ers. This team has a fantastic offensive mind in Kyle Shanahan, a great supporting cast, and one of the most talented defenses in football. In 2019, this team made it all the way to the Super Bowl despite having a very pedestrian Jimmy Garoppolo under center.

Watson is a massive upgrade on Garoppolo, and he’s certainly better than Nick Mullens. Combining him with Shanahan’s brilliance would simply be unfair for the rest of the league. Even with a lack of draft capital, adding Watson would make San Francisco the NFC’s team to beat for the next decade.

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