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Rob Gronkowski or J.J. Watt: Which player would you rather have?

Although tight end Rob Gronkowski and defensive end J.J. Watt each missed time in 2016with back injuries, it's no secret they are two of the best players in the league at their respective positions. A four-time Pro Bowler and three-time first-team All-Pro selection, Gronkowski has transcended the tight end position and helped Tom Brady and the Patriots continue their unbelievable run. While the Houston Texans star (four Pro Bowls and four first-team All-Pro selections) has earned three Defensive Player of the Year awards for his consistently dominant play over the past six seasons.

It seems there's almost nothing these two larger-than-life athletes can't do. With the pair playing on opposite sides of the ball, we pose the simple question: Who would you rather have on your team? Gronk or Watt?

I'd take Gronk. On film, sometimes J.J. Watt takes plays off and there have been different looks that negate Watt's impact on the game. But I don't know if the league possesses a defender who can guard Gronk consistently -- at least I have yet to see one. He's a player who drives coverage and drives scheme. It doesn't really matter who's trying to defend him. Gronk is better but similar to Jimmy Graham, and we've watched Graham disappear with the wrong quarterback in Seattle. This isn't a knock on Russell Wilson, but Wilson isn't in the right offense to take advantage of Graham's talents the way Drew Brees did in New Orleans. So if you take Gronk out of New England, I doubt he'd be the best tight end in the league. He'll still be able to block and do all the things we've known him to do, but he won't be nearly as effective.

If you put J.J. Watt in any defense, he will still wreck shop. Watt wins this debate. As good as J.J. Watt is, the Houston Texans still had the No. 1 defense in the league. I guess you could make the same argument for the Super Bowl winning Patriots without Gronk. But having a tight end who can block and beat most safeties and corners in coverage, that's such a huge advantage. He can be used in so many ways and big targets down the middle of the field are huge.

It comes down to this: I don't know if Watt is going to get to the quarterback every third down. I do know that I'll get a pretty good route from Gronk and get a chance to make the throw in a clutch situation. I've never seen anyone play like J.J. Watt does. Ever. He makes such a high volume of splash, game-changing plays, along with everything else he does during the course of a game. I'm not taking anything away from Gronk but Watt is super human. That's a tough question because you're talking about two of the best players in the NFL who line up on opposite sides of the ball. With Gronk, there hasn't been a guy who can stop him one-on-one yet. Gronk -- especially with his size (6-foot-6, 265 pounds) -- is a weapon that can be used in multiple positions and he makes everything more difficult for the defense. I don't care how good the defense is.

Watt can also be used in a lot of different ways -- rushing the passer, defending the run, etc. -- but teams can scheme away from him. We've seen it before where teams double team or do certain things to negate Watt's power.

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