CLEMSON QUARTERBACK TAKEN WITH NO. 12 PICK …
The Houston Texans picked former Clemson University star Deshaun Watson with the No. 12 pick in the 2017 NFL draft – trading up thirteen picks to get their quarterback of the future.
In addition to swapping first round picks, the Texans also surrendered their 2018 first round pick to the Cleveland Browns as part of the deal.
Watson led the Tigers to their second-ever national championship last season – and should have won the Heisman Trophy as well.
The 6-foot-3, 215-pound junior from Gainesville, Georgia completed 388 of 579 passes for 4,593 yards last season – throwing 41 touchdowns in the process. He also ran for 629 yards and nine scores.
During his three seasons at Clemson, Watson posted a 32-3 record – good for the best winning percentage in school history. Watson is also the school record holder in career completion percentage (.674), passing efficiency (157.5) and total offense per game (318.3).
“He’s a winner. He’s got that winning gene,” Texans’ general manager Rick Smith said of Watson.
— Houston Texans (@HoustonTexans) April 28, 2017
The Texans thought they had solved their quarterback problems last year when they inked former Denver Broncos’ signal caller Brock Osweiler to a four-year, $72 million deal. Osweiler was a disaster in Houston, though, and was unloaded to Cleveland in the offseason.
Watson is expected to battle fourth-year pro Tom Savage for Houston’s starting quarterback job in training camp this summer.
NFL analysts praised Watson for his leadership and toughness – which was exemplified in the national championship game when he basically rope-a-doped the best defense in the nation.
“These vets recognize when a quarterback takes a pounding and gets up off the turf,” ESPN’s Matt Bowen noted. “That’s leadership, that’s toughness and it sells in the locker room at every level.”
(Banner via Travis Bell Photography)