Bill O'Brien on Deshaun Watson Contract: Texans Would Love to Have QB Long-Term

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistJuly 31, 2020

Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson runs the ball during the first half of an NFL divisional playoff football game against the Houston Texans Sunday, Jan. 12, 2020, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

Houston Texans head coach Bill O'Brien would like to see Deshaun Watson play with the team for many years to come.

Asked about his star quarterback's contract Friday, O'Brien didn't offer specifics to reporters beyond hoping Watson remains with the Texans long-term.

'We're not going to talk about contracts in the media," he said. "We'd love to have Deshaun here for a long time. He's here, he's excited and we're excited about the season."

Watson has two years remaining on his rookie contract, but the two-time Pro Bowler is eligible to sign an extension this offseason.

Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reported in May that Watson's deal was the Texans' top priority after they signed offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil to an extension.

Wilson said a new contract for Watson "could range between $40 million and $42 million guaranteed" per season.

Appearing on The Rich Eisen Show last month, Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk reported Watson wants and is "likely to get" a three-year extension.

Per Over the Cap, an average salary between $40 million and $42 million would make Watson the second-highest-paid quarterback in the NFL behind Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs ($45 million).

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If Watson gets the extension he wants this offseason, that would also allow him to become a free agent after the 2024 season. He will only be 29 years old at that point and potentially in line for another lucrative contract.

The Texans selected Watson with the 12th overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft after trading two first-round picks to the Cleveland Browns to move up. The Clemson alum has established himself as one of the league's best quarterbacks with 9,716 yards, 71 touchdowns and a 66.8 completion percentage in 38 career games.

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