Fred Faour: Get ready Texans fans – the Deshaun Watson circus is coming to town

Mandatory Credit: Photo by David Richard/AP/Shutterstock (13619978a) Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson stands on the field before an NFL preseason football game against the Chicago Bears, on Aug. 27, 2022, in Cleveland. Watson can begin practicing, as part of his agreement with the NFL on an 11-game suspension after being accused of sexual misconduct by two dozen women when he played for Houston Browns Watson Football, Cleveland, United States – 27 Aug 2022

Fred Faour: Get ready Texans fans – the Deshaun Watson circus is coming to town

Let’s be honest, there is nothing interesting about this Texans team right now. They have regressed, the young draft picks have not developed and they have not been competitive in a game for a while. They are well on their way to the No. 1 pick, where they will simply have to get a franchise quarterback.

This week will remind them that they once had one.

Once upon a time, way back in 2019, the Texans were leading the Chiefs in the divisional playoffs 24-0. Dreams of a Super Bowl were in the minds of Texans fans everywhere.

But Bill O’Brien’s systematic destruction of that team began that day, first with some in-game decisions that saw the Texans lose 51-31.

Then came the worst trade in NFL history, as O’Brien shipped out DeAndre Hopkins for a bag of peanuts. The Texans would follow that with a four-win season in the Covid-plagued 2020, finally ousting O’Brien, whose tenure as GM will go down as one of the worst ever.

They have not beat four wins since and will not do it this year. First, Watson demanded a trade, just months after signing a huge contract. Then, the lawsuits against him began to hit for sexual assault against numerous masseuses. The franchise quarterback, who looked so promising in the early stages of that Chiefs game, wanted out and was now trained enough that it would be hard to get fair value for him.

So he spent 2021 on the roster, getting paid but never playing as the lawsuits played out. Finally, he was sent to Cleveland for three first round picks.

The Texans continued to fall deeper in the pit. O’Brien was followed by interim coach Romeo Crennel, then David Culley, now Lovie Smith, none with any success.

Meanwhile, Watson waited out his suspension, an appeal, and finally gets to return to the field for the first time since that 2020 season.

As fate would have it, his first game is at NRG Stadium this Sunday. It will be a cruel reminder of what O’Brien destroyed. It’s also the only game on the schedule the Texans should want to win, because it will help their draft status, as they own the Browns top pick.

It remains to be seen if Watson will be the flashy, gamebreaking player he showed in Houston. He has not played since that four win 2020, and elite quarterbacks don’t play on four win teams. Plus, the off-field issues have to weigh on him. As for the Texans, they have been their own clown show for years.

So Houston fans will have at least something interesting to watch this week. The hope would be the lowly Texans will rise up and knock off a Browns team that has not been great without Watson. Give the fans something to hang on to for the future. Maybe even turn the page on a dark time in team history.

Unfortunately, that does not seem likely considering the Texans have turned to Kyle Allen at quarterback, can’t run the football even with promising rookie Damieon Pierce and simply looks like a JV team. In fact, there is nothing interesting about this team.

But this week’s game? Get ready, kids, the circus is coming to town. Deshaun Watson is back.

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