J.J. Watt Rumors: Former Texans Star's Free-Agency Decision Not 'Imminent'

Jenna CiccotelliAnalyst IFebruary 24, 2021

FILE - In this Jan. 3, 2021, file photo, Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt (99) waves to fans as he walks off the field after an NFL football game against the Tennessee Titans in Houston. Watt is gone from the Texans and Deshaun Watson wants out, too. The Texans have been making plenty of headlines this offseason. Not one has been good. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith, File)
Eric Christian Smith/Associated Press

J.J. Watt is in no rush to make his free-agency decision.

According to ESPN's Jeremy Fowler, the five-time All-Pro is working on "narrowing his options for a new team," but "nothing is imminent." 

As expected, Fowler said "plenty of teams have gotten involved" regarding the pursuit of Watt, who requested a release from the Houston Texans after playing all 10 seasons of his career with the franchise. 

John Clayton of ESPN 710 Seattle mentioned the Tennessee Titans, Green Bay Packers and Buffalo Bills (h/t Andrew Fillipponi of Pittsburgh's 93.7 The Fan) as teams to keep an eye on for Watt. Clayton later clarified that those three teams were "the leading teams," but the Cleveland Browns and Las Vegas Raiders were still in the race among the dozen teams looking to add him. 

Watt, who is a free agent for the first time, opened up about the reality of the decision on Twitter on Sunday.

The three-time Defensive Player of the Year finished with five sacks, 17 quarterback hits and a pair of forced fumbles through 16 games for the Texans last season. 

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While his production quieted in 2020, he's leaving quite the legacy in Houston. The 31-year-old, who was drafted with the No. 11 pick in 2011, holds franchise records in sacks (101.0), tackles for loss (172), quarterback hits (282) and forced fumbles (25).  

With little news regarding his future, the NFL community has taken it upon themselves to read into Watt's tweets. Chaos ensued after he tweeted that "mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell," leading to theories linking him to the Buffalo Bills because there are the same amount of letters in "mitochondria" and "Buffalo Bills," and the Mitochondria Research Society is in Buffalo (h/t Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk).