Patrick Mahomes isn't the only star quarterback from the 2017 draft class in line for a massive extension.
Deshaun Watson, drafted two spots behind the Super Bowl LIV MVP in the first round of that draft, is also under contract through 2021 after the Houston Texans exercised his fifth-year option. Like Mahomes, he expects to strike a deal that would cement him as his organization's franchise QB for half a decade to come at least. The same goes for Dak Prescott, who has yet to sign his franchise tag in Dallas.
Who will be signed first? It would behoove both the Cowboys and Texans to ink their Lone Star gunslingers before Mahomes cashes in on what is expected to be a record-setting deal. But in Watson's case, the Texans QB is not stressing about a timeline, more optimistic that something will get done rather than worried about when it will get done.
"It's definitely good," Watson said of his contract situation, via Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle. "It's exciting for all of us. Only time will tell, but we're going to do everything we can to make sure it's on the right track. We're going to win a lot of games and championships while we continue to figure out that side of the business, too."
Already a two-time Pro Bowler and two-time AFC South champion, Watson is the future of professional football in Texas, a status proven in his play that has yet to be validated with a contract offer. The Texans QB, arguably the best in franchise history just three years into his career, has gone 25-15 in 40 starts, including the postseason, throwing for 10,586 yards, 75 touchdowns and 30 picks.
The league-leader in sacks taken in 2018, Watson benefited from Houston's acquisition of left tackle Laremy Tunsil in 2019. The Texans' extension of Tunsil, to the tune of a whopping $57.85 million guaranteed, was a long-overdue investment in Houston's offensive line and therefore in Watson. It was also a sign, along with the Texans trading away DeAndre Hopkins (owed $49 million over the next three years), Houston is ready to shell out serious coin to protect and keep its star QB.
That fact is on Watson's mind, even as Houston prepares for the 2020 season under the strangest of circumstances, working out away from the team facility as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
"That's definitely something that is not under the rug," Watson said, via Mark Berman of FOX 26. "My main focus is just being the best teammate, best leader, best quarterback I can be and whenever that time comes with my agent and the organization, the timing is going to be right. For me right now, the focus is on being the best teammate, getting the new guys on the same page with me as the quarterback of this offense and making sure I'm staying healthy and ready to go whenever they call me, call us in to go play."
If and when Watson and the Texans return to their facility and begin workouts and training camp ahead of the 2020 season, he'll be operating with high expectations but on the cheap; Watson, 24, is slated to make just $2.35 million this season, less than the likes of Jeff Driskel, Chase Daniel and even his backup A.J. McCarron.
That won't be the case for long, and Watson's extension is not a matter of if but when. The Texans signal-caller is happy to wait and see, and win, in the meantime.