NFL Rumors: Houston Texans, New Orleans Saints, San Francisco 49ers

The NFL world never really stops, especially in the weeks leading up to the NFL Draft. Over the past few days, various NFL rumors suggest that the divide between Houston Texans and quarterback Deshaun Watson is growing even wider – to the point where a reunion seems incredibly unlikely. Additionally, Jameis Winston is reportedly working on a more conservative style of play, while the San Francisco 49ers are still keeping their options open at quarterback.

NFL Rumors: Texans, Saints, 49ers

Houston Texans, Deshaun Watson Divide Continues

The Deshaun Watson saga has easily been the biggest story of the 2021 offseason. Watson originally demanded a trade back in February and has since received multiple civil suits regarding some truly abhorrent sexual behavior. The quarterback is currently staring down 19 separate lawsuits, and that number could be on the rise.

Speaking to reporters on Monday, first-year General Manager Nick Caserio said that the organization takes the allegations “very seriously”, but added that he and the Texans will “let the legal process take care of itself”. Considering the current state of the case, it’s hard to imagine Watson getting traded prior to the 2021 NFL Draft.

While Caserio might keep a strong face in front of the media, inside reports suggest that the relationship between Watson and the Texans is completely unsalvageable. Speaking on Sirius XM’s Fantasy Dirt, Steve Wyche of the NFL Network said that “[t]he trust between Deshaun Watson and the Texans is beyond fractured”. If Watson ever plays again, it almost certainly will not be in Houston.

Jameis Winston: Game Manager “not a bad piece” for New Orleans Saints

After spending 2020 backing up Drew Brees, Jameis Winston has a chance to reclaim one of the NFL’s 32 starting jobs in 2021. Anyone that watched Winston’s first five years in the league knows that he is simultaneously one of the best and worst quarterbacks in the league, capable of making beautiful throws and mind-bogglingly terrible decisions in the blink of an eye. However, given a second opportunity, Winston says he’s trying to be a little more conservative in New Orleans.

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Speaking to NFL.com, Winston said that he “never wanted to be deemed a game manager” but accepted that he needs to play with a little more caution, specifically emphasizing the importance of “being able to do the things that you should not do”.

Winston hardly played in 2020, as Taysom Hill earned starting duties during the four games he missed to injury. The structure of Winston’s one-year deal implies that he will have to earn the job, but will be given a fair shot in a competition. If he can reduce his turnover rate, then Winston could very well be one of the NFL’s better passers with a great offensive mind like Sean Payton.

San Francisco 49ers Still Mulling Quarterback Decision

The San Francisco 49ers made a huge move earlier in the week, trading three first-round picks for the rights to the third-overall pick. Everyone in the world knows that they will be selecting a quarterback, but nobody can definitively say which quarterback that will be.

The current frontrunners appear to be Alabama’s Mac Jones and North Dakota State’s Trey Lance. Everyone expects Trevor Lawrence and Zach Wilson to be off the board before San Francisco is on the clock, so we’ll rule those two out. For what it’s worth, head coach Kyle Shanahan is going to Alabama’s Pro Day and mentioned that “you don’t have to hide [your intentions] as much when you have the third-overall pick. This heavily suggests that Jones is San Francisco’s ideal quarterback, but this could just be a smokescreen to prevent a team from giving up a king’s ransom for New York’s second-overall pick.

No matter who the quarterback is, the organization claims that Jimmy Garoppolo is still a part of the team’s plans. The 49ers believe that they have the pieces to compete for a Super Bowl, and Garoppolo gives them the best chance to win in 2021. Again, this could be a smokescreen to raise the asking price in any potential trade scenario. It’s worth noting that Garoppolo has a no-trade clause in his contract and would need to approve any potential deal.

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