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Deshaun Watson: I'd love to have Bill O'Brien back

  • By Jeremy Bergman
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Bill O'Brien has made it clear that he wants to return as Houston Texans head coach, but does their franchise quarterback want him there?

"We have a great relationship," Deshaun Watson said of O'Brien to the Houston Chronicle on Tuesday. "Coach OB is fun to play for. He's very tough on you. He wants you to be successful. I would love to have coach OB back and I'm ready to have him with me for my whole career."

Watson also sounded confident in his ongoing rehab from the season-ending ACL injury that robbed him of a Rookie of the Year candidacy and the Texans of a postseason run.

"There's no timeline from ACLs," Watson told Mark Berman of Fox26, per ProFootballTalk. "People give you five, six, seven, eight months to come back. It's just whenever we feel it's right. But I know for sure I'll be back next season."

At the time of his devastating injury, Watson had tallied 1,699 passing yards, 19 passing touchdowns and eight interceptions in his first year as a pro. The Texans rookie was coming off an insane four-game stretch in which he threw at least three scores in each game. Since Watson's exit, Houston has dropped six of its seven games with Tom Savage, the season's starter, and T.J. Yates under center.

With reports swirling that O'Brien and general manager Rick Smith are at odds heading into the coach's last year on his deal, talk about O'Brien's departure, either by resignation or firing, have intensified. But why would O'Brien leave? With Watson, All-Pro defensive end J.J. Watt, linebacker Whitney Mercilus and deep-threat receiver Will Fuller all returning from injury, Houston can go into next season as serious contenders, if not the favorites, to win the AFC South.

It helps too, for the sake of O'Brien's job security, that he now has the full, vocal support of Watson, who will be the face of the franchise going forward, with or without O'Brien.


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