Texans' QB is a rookie, but he'll be a handful for Hawks: 'There's nothing he can't do'

SEATTLE – A year ago this week, Deshaun Watson was preparing to lead Clemson against Florida State.

A tall order for sure, but the stakes will be higher and the defense infinitely stiffer when the rookie quarterback leads the Houston Texans against the Seattle Seahawks in a 1:05 p.m. game at CenturyLink Field.

Watson has acquitted himself well – make that extremely well – since replacing Tom Savage as the starting quarterback at halftime of the Texans’ season opener.

“There’s nothing he can’t do,” Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said last week. “He’s doing it all, and he’s making marvelous throws, tight-window throws all across the board from the top down.

“They’ve gotta be just thrilled to have him jumping in there and doing what he’s doing.”

Carroll’s not kidding.

After 5.5 games, Watson has completed 107-of-174 passes for 1,297 yards, with 15 touchdowns and five interceptions. He’s just as deadly on the ground, carrying the ball 28 times for 202 yards – an eye-popping 7.2 yards per carry.

It’s really exciting to see him step into his role and do such a wonderful job of it,” Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson said. “He’s playing unbelievable football. He’s a special, special player and will be a special player for a long time.

“So, anytime you see that, I personally get excited for guys when they have that opportunity.”

The Texans clearly had high hopes for Watson when they made him the No. 12 overall pick in April’s draft. Houston has torn through quarterback after quarterback after quarterback since Matt Schaub was traded to the Oakland Raiders after the 2013 season.

Between Schaub and Watson, the following quarterbacks started at least one game for Houston: Ryan Fitzpatrick, Ryan Mallett, Case Keenum, Brian Hoyer, T.J. Yates, Brandon Weeden, Brock Osweiler and Savage.

Maybe that means the Texans have seen enough to know when they have something good on their hands?

“It doesn’t take long to see how versatile he is, and the dynamic player that he is,” Carroll said.