Deshaun Watson En Route to Denver?

Jan 3, 2021; Houston, Texas, USA; Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson (4) warms up before a game against the Tennessee Titans at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Deshaun Watson now has more rumors swirling around him. The former Clemson quarterback, who already has faced multiple lawsuits alleging sexual assault and inappropriate behavior, now says that he wants to join the Denver Broncos, at least from a former teammate’s perspective.

Defensive back Kareem Jackson, who played with Watson and the Texans in 2017 and 2018, made an appearance on the “Catchin’ Fades” Podcast, hosted by retired NFL cornerback Aqib Talib. In a statement during the podcast, Jackson said, “I’ve got a great relationship with Deshaun. I’ve been talking to him the last couple of weeks, man, and like, all he’s been telling me is like, ‘Jack, just tell ‘em, like, that’s where I want to be.’ … He’s like, ‘I want to be in Denver.’”

Watson, in this sense, is pulling an Aaron Rodgers. The quarterback hadn’t shown up for the Texans’ voluntary organized team activities and mandatory minicamp. However, Houston recently announced that the minicamp, scheduled for June 15 through June 17, had been canceled, which means that Deshaun is safe from being fined for missing any spring workouts. If he would have missed the minicamp, Watson would have received a fine totaling $95,877.

Back to Kareem Jackson and his appearance on Talib’s podcast, the former Alabama Crimson tide defensive back who now has spent a decade in the league said that Watson wanted him to let the Broncos’ front office know that he’s interested in playing for them.

A couple of months had passed after Watson had asked for a trade from the Texans because of his displeasure with how the organization had handled the searching process for a new general manager, lawsuits were beginning to be filed by massage therapists alleging sexual assault and inappropriate behavior. No settlement discussions have been conducted during the discovery phase of the lawsuits, and if they continue to trial, testimonies from witnesses would begin in September. The plaintiffs would provide their descriptions first, and Watson would not be able to argue against the claims until February of next year. At this time, the NFL is conducting its own investigation into the filed lawsuits.

Comparing the quarterbacks on both rosters, The Broncos currently have Drew Lock and recently acquired (trade via Carolina) Teddy Bridgewater, while the Texans have free-agent acquisition Tyrod Taylor and backup Davis Mills. Watson is slated to obtain a fifth-year option on his rookie contract with a salary valued at $10.5 million. Due to an extension, he signed in September of last year, he will be a hit of $35 million to a team’s salary cap come 2022.

The rumor mill is abuzz as we draw closer to the first day of summer, and Deshaun Watson is heating up the discussion with his trade request.