Deshaun Watson not expected to play in Texans preseason opener Saturday
Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson (4) arrives at NFL football practice Monday, Aug. 2, 2021, in Houston. (AP Photo/Justin Rex)

The week out at Texans training camp started promising enough as quarterback Deshaun Watson trotted out on the practice field for the first time in a week.

But it quickly turned awkward again as the Texans’ unhappy franchise quarterback was again relegated to fourth-string practice duties. It became even more odd as this week has progressed toward the Texans’ preseason opener at Green Bay on Saturday and the reality that not only will Watson not take the field, but it’s unlikely he will even make the trip.

Of course, it could have been a lot less awkward if the Texans confirmed Watson would not be playing. Instead, there has been nothing but evasive talk out at Texans camp.

General manager Nick Caserio told Texans flagship state SportsRadio 610, “I don’t expect him to play.”

However, head coach David Culley hinted Watson would not play in the preseason game, but stopped short of confirming what his general manager said on air. Culley told reporters that Watson’s absence last week due to a calf and ankle injury is what makes his playing status uncertain.

Caserio has not met with the media this week.

“Well, as I said before, it’s day-to-day with him,” said Culley, who will be making his head coaching debut Saturday. “He’d been out for a while. We’re just taking it day-to-day, as we have been from the start of training camp.”

With the Texans looking for the right trade offer for Watson, it’s highly unlikely he will see the field in any of the Texans’ three preseason games due to the chance of injury. But when asked whether he expects Watson to play this preseason, Culley responded, “No comment.”

That has been all that has come out of Texans camp this week where Watson is concerned. But Watson, who has not spoken to the media since the end of last season, did snap at photographers Thursday as he entered the practice area with his customary hoodie covering his face.

“Why are y’all always filming me?” Watson said as he passed by the cameras. “It’s the same shit.”

It’s clear that at this point Watson still wants to be traded and he doesn’t seem to be part of the Texans’ plans. The team is moving forward with veteran Tyrod Taylor as the starting quarterback and rookie Davis Mills as the quarterback in waiting.

What has complicated Watson’s trade value is the 22 sexual misconduct lawsuits that have been brought by massage therapists and the likely criminal prosecution and subsequent NFL punishment. 

I've been with The Defender since August 2019. I'm a long-time sportswriter who has covered everything from college sports to the Texans and Rockets during my 16 years of living in the Houston market....