The awards of J.J. Watt (so far)


Jan 1, 2015; Tampa, FL, USA; Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt posses for a picture with the Wisconsin Badgers cheerleaders prior to the game in the 2015 Outback Bowl against the Auburn Tigers at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The accolades showered on J.J. Watt (so far) for his 2014 performance are racking up like like the score on a pinball machine gone wild. Let’s start with the Pro-Bowl, his third selection in a row, and hes’ been named a captain along with DeMarco Murray(RB DAL), Antonio Brown(WR PIT) and Joe Haden(CB CLE). Watt and Brown will be the paired against Murray and Haden. The team they play for and the alumni team captains they play for, either Chris Carter or Michael Irvin will be determined by a coin toss on the 20th. Watt will have a say in who his team drafts. That’s just fun right there and well earned.

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Next up is the Pro Football Writers of America handing Mr. Watt their Defensive Player of the Year award. This was an obvious choice but a little disappointing as I believe Watt is MVP, but they felt that honor should go to Aaron Rodgers. I guess they all have State Farm… The PFWA also named Watt to it’s “ALL-NFL” team, again an honor he’s had twice before. This is a level of exceptional play that’s starting to approach legendary status. The Texans will look back 20 years from now and realize that the 2011 selection of Watt as one of the biggest moments in it’s history, and one of the best.

Pro Football Focus has been trying very hard to find a way to keep Watt in the same galaxy as other players in terms of his stats but that’s been proving difficult. As they put it in their own metrics here’s how Watt fairs: Watt’s +107.5 overall grade is the first to crack triple digits in the PFF era and while it’s not always fair to compare across positions, it may be best to compare him to the next best grade at his position… Jets DE Sheldon Richardson and his +39.9. That’s, absurd really the level of his play over the competition. Watt’s a real life version of a gamer taking a single player in say Madden Football and maxing his stats to 100%. Even that’s a bad analogy as the game prevents you from doing what Watt does by routine.

The NFL will hand out it’s big end of the year awards the night before the Super Bowl. The odds are Aaron Rodgers will walk away with the MVP award as his Packers made the playoffs and Watt will earn his second Defensive Player of the Year award. I understand the whole “If the team didn’t make the play offs you can’t be MVP” mentality, I just disagree with it. If you had Aaron Rodgers and J.J. Watt on your team and you were forced to part with one say for salary reasons, which one would you give up? There are other quarterbacks out there with great skill, not a lot but they are out there. How many defensive players can do what Watt can do?

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