Texans' JJ Watt: 'The Uncertainty Is the Worst Part' About 2020-21 NFL Season

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMay 27, 2020

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI - JANUARY 12: Defensive end J.J. Watt #99 of the Houston Texans looks on from the sideline in the second half during the AFC Divisional playoff game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium on January 12, 2020 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Peter G. Aiken/Getty Images)
Peter G. Aiken/Getty Images

Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt said he's "waiting and seeing" whether the 2020 NFL season kicks off on time amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Watt told TMZ Sports in an interview released Wednesday the general theme of his offseason has been "stay ready" in case the schedule moves forward as planned.

"The uncertainty is the worst part of it all. We don't know what's going to happen," he said. "But I'm training like it's gonna happen on time. And I'm looking forward to playing—fans, no fans—whatever it is. I'm just looking forward to competing and just doing what we do."

Watt explained that safety should be the No. 1 priority as a potential return to play approaches, especially since many staff members are in older age groups more at risk of serious COVID-19 complications:

"We love the game. We love the competition ... as long as it's safe for everybody.

"You have to remember, we have coaches who are older. We have people helping out on the sidelines and staff members. So as long it's safe for everybody and as long as everybody is comfortable and confident, I'm all for it because I think it does help return some normalcy and it gives people something to be excited about, to cheer for again. And we're looking forward to that opportunity if it's safe."

Yahoo Sports' Charles Robinson reported Tuesday that NFL head coaches could return to their team facilities next week, which would jump-start the process of restarting on-field football activities, with the league aiming for minicamps in mid-to-late June.

If those dates are met, it would keep the door open for training camps in July, the preseason in August and the regular season starting on time with the reigning Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs hosting Watt and the Texans on Sept. 10.

Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross said Tuesday on CNBC (via ESPN's Cameron Wolfe) the current outlook calls for an on-time start with fans in the stands.

"I think there definitely will be a football season this year," Ross said. "Real question is, will there be fans in the stadium? Right now—today—we're planning to have fans in the stadium."

That would be a major victory for the NFL, which is the only one of the country's "big four" professional sports leagues whose regular season hasn't been impacted by the pandemic so far.

Bleacher Report's David Gardner interviews athletes and other sports figures for the podcast How to Survive Without Sports.