Quarterback Deshaun Watson and the Houston Texans are discussing a long-term contract, ESPN’s Ed Werder reported, but the talks were framed as “very preliminary.”
On the day the franchise made left tackle Laremy Tunsil the highest-paid offensive lineman in the NFL with a $66 million contract over three years, reports leaked that Watson and the Texans are also talking about a new deal.
Texans head coach Bill O’Brien is also in control of the personnel department. When asked earlier in the offseason about the prospects of retaining Watson, O’Brien left no doubt the franchise wants to keep him.
“We want him to be a Houston Texan for his career,” O’Brien said. “He is a great person, he’s a great football player and he means a lot to this organization, to this city, to this league. I just don’t want to get into the nuts and bolts of when you would do that and all those different things. Those things take time, but we want him here for a long time.”
Watson and Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, drafted after the Chicago Bears selected Mitchell Trubisky second overall in 2017, are eligible for long-term extensions this offseason.
Watson is scheduled to make $4.4 million in 2020 after making $3.8 million last season.
Those figures pale in comparison with the record-setting stratosphere Watson — and Mahomes — is expected to hit with a long-term deal.
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, who signed a four-year, $140 million contract in April 2019, is currently the top-paid quarterback in the NFL.
Chiefs general manager Brett Veach said at the 2020 NFL Scouting Combine that Mahomes’ contract would be a priority soon.
“Pat and his agent, Chris (Cabot) and Leigh (Steinberg), they know Pat is a priority. Pat isn’t going anywhere,” Veach said. “Pat is going to be here a long time. I can never sit here and speak in definitives, so I can’t say that the fifth year won’t be an option or anything like that. It would be hard for me to see that we’d have to use that. We feel that it’s a priority and when you have a great player, and that great player is a priority, things get done.”
—Field Level Media