Good, Bad and Ugly – With J. J. Watt’s back surgery the Texans defensive line is likely to start the season in The Bad scenario. The Texans are painting an optimistic picture projecting that Watt will be ready to start the season, but that is far from a given. A game 5 return is at least as likely as game 1.
Watt’s unexpected surgery demonstrates that even the best expectation is just a snapshot in time. What we expect when making a prediction can be changed, sometimes significantly, by what happens as the season progresses. That’s why possible performance ranges are presented in The Good, The Bad and The Ugly…stuff happens.
The Texans are being very tight-lipped about Watt’s surgery. We don’t know how bad the disc herniation was or whether pain radiated down his leg. We do know the injury was a reaggravation of a previous injury and bad enough to require surgery. That alone makes the Texans’ projection of a complete recovery by the first game extraordinarily optimistic.
For consistency, we will present the Good, Bad and Ugly for the defensive line in the same format as the other position groups. The expectation at the time of the prediction included a healthy J. J. Watt, and that will be our starting point. The projected likelihood of the Good, Bad, and Ugly scenarios considers the new reality of Watt’s early season being in jeopardy.
Next: The Good