J.J. Watt Teases Return to the NFL Under One Condition


During a May 4 interview with the Houston Chronicle, former Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt announced that he would consider returning to his former team if they “absolutely needed it.” Despite retiring in 2022, Watt is more than willing to play once more for the team he spent 10 of his 12 NFL seasons with.

“I’ve had 12 great years in this league and I’m very thankful to have walked away healthy and playing great,” Watt began when asked if he’d return to the league. “I mean, I told [Texans coach] DeMeco [Ryans] last year, ‘Don’t call unless you absolutely need it, but if you ever do call, I’ll be there,’ and he knows not to call unless he absolutely needs it.”

Watt, who’s since joined CBS Sports’ The NFL Today as a broadcaster, stipulated that he won’t be volunteering his duties after the upcoming season.

“This is the last year I’ll tell [Ryans] that, because I’m not going to keep training the way I’ve been training,” Watt added, “but he knows that if he ever truly does need it, I’ll be there for him.”

However, Watt admitted, “I don’t anticipate that happening,” as the Texans currently have “a very good group” of players for next season.

Watt is considered one of the greatest defensive linemen in the game’s history. He was selected by the Texans in the first round of the 2011 NFL draft, and still holds the record for the most sacks and forced fumbles of any player from the team.

I asked J.J. Watt how he resists the temptation to return to football, especially given the Texans’ rise. His answer was interesting.

Watt told DeMeco Ryans he’s still training and is ready if he absolutely needs it. pic.twitter.com/Z3gbfqjOA1

— B.Scott from Hiram Clarke (@brandonkscott) May 4, 2024

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