Watt Becomes 2nd Player to Lead NFL in Sacks Twice in 1st 5 Seasons

HOUSTON, TX - JANUARY 03: J.J. Watt #99 of the Houston Texans celebrates after making a sack against the Jacksonville Jaguars in the first quarter on January 3, 2016 at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
Bob Levey/Getty Images
Bleacher Report MilestonesB/R StaffJanuary 8, 2016

Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt used a huge Week 17 performance against the Jacksonville Jaguars to join Reggie White as the only players in NFL history to lead the league in sacks two times within their first five professional seasons, per Elias Sports Bureau (via

After getting to Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles three times in the regular-season finale, Watt finished his fifth NFL campaign with a league-high 17 sacks, beating out Oakland Raiders linebacker Khalil Mack (15 sacks) and Detroit Lions defensive end Ezekiel Ansah (14.5) for the title.

Similarly dominant at a very young age, Watt has often been compared to White throughout his career, which is the highest form of praise for any defensive lineman.

Sitting at 74.5 career sacks through five seasons and 80 games, the 26-year-old Watt was the second-fastest in league history to reach 70 sacks, hitting the milestone in just his 75th contest, per Fox Sports.

Of course, it was White who reached the mark even faster, somehow needing just 57 games to amass 70 sacks, eventually notching 81 though his first five seasons despite missing seven games along the way.

Though he probably won't beat White to any of the key milestones below 150 sacks, it isn't out of the question that Watt could eventually pass both White (198) and Bruce Smith (200) atop the all-time leaderboard.

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