Around the NFL

Watt brothers reunite in Week 3's Texans-Steelers matchup

It will be a special Sunday afternoon for the Watt family when the Pittsburgh Steelers host the Houston Texans.

J.J., Derek and T.J. Watt will be the fourth known trio of brothers to play at least one game together in NFL history.

The first to do it were the Nesser brothers in 1920, when Frank and Ted of the Columbus Panhandles played against their sibling Al of the Akron Pros. Brother Fred would eventually join the Panhandles and take part in the same matchup the following season for the only game to feature four brothers.

The Rooney brothers -- Bill, Cobb and Joe -- played together in 1924 for the Duluth Kelleys and would share the field three other times throughout the decade.

Remarkably, this Sunday will be the second consecutive season where a trio of brothers shared the field on the same day. In Week 15 of 2019, when the Buffalo Bills visited the Steelers on Sunday Night Football, Tremaine, Terrell and Trey Edmunds squared off.

With the Watts, Sunday will mark the second occasion in NFL history where a pair of brothers who had previously been named First-Team All-Pro share the field, with J.J. and T.J. holding that honor. Tiki and Ronde Barber was the other pair to do it in 2006 when the New York Giants faced the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

"For me it was super important in my development to play with J.J. and Derek to get beat up on a lot when I was younger," said Steelers pass rusher T.J. Watt, via the Associated Press. "But (it taught me to) just kind of be resilient and continue to grow and learn from my experiences playing up with those guys."

T.J. -- the youngest of the Watt trio -- is coming off a 2.5-sack performance that earned him AFC Defensive Player of the Week honors in Week 2. The 26-year-old has emerged as one of the NFL's elite pass rushers with 37 sacks in 49 games of his young career.

Eldest brother J.J. Watt, 31, has already established a Hall of Fame resume entering his tenth season with the Texans, and with two sacks on Sunday he can become the 35th player ever to eclipse 100 sacks for his career.

Derek Watt, the 27-year-old middle brother, is the offensive player at fullback for the Steelers, and has a chance to redeem last year's defeat when he played J.J. as a member of the Los Angeles Chargers.

"It definitely will be special," said Derek. "Ideally, we all get there healthy but if it does happen, that's the first time we all truly have been on the field at the same time, especially at this level obviously. We really, other than in the backyard and just workouts, we've never all been on the field at the same time in a true competition so that will be extremely special for the family."

The Watts have forged an incredible bond from playing backyard football in Pewaukee, Wisconsin, to following each other's footsteps at the University of Wisconsin and eventually the NFL. A lifetime of competition between the three has certainly aided their individual success, and after three hours of what will be a memorable Sunday for the Watts, the brothers will meet at midfield postgame to fully realize how far they've come.

"I think it came down to our parents working extremely hard for what they got in life and teaching us that if we want to accomplish our dreams and our goals, we had to work extremely hard and make a lot of sacrifices," J.J. said. "Which at the time we hated but now we understand and we appreciate it."

The Texans (0-2) enter Pittsburgh still looking for their first win of the season while the Steelers (2-0) aim to remain unbeaten.

Related Content

Gamepass_vert_web_r

See all the Action

Replay every game all season.