JJ Watt made his NFL on CBS debut on Sunday and by most accounts acquitted himself very well in his new career.
Awful Announcing’s Chris Novak said that while “the former longtime Houston Texans defensive end may not have always flashed an exuberant personality as a player…based on his first performance, it sounds like he has a bright future.”
“All told, a bang-up job in the first week for Watt’s CBS debut,” added Novak. “He isn’t an in-game analyst, and you can’t expect him to launch any nuclear takes his first week on the job. So we’ll see later how he adjusts in the pre- and postgame arena.”
Even as his burgeoning broadcasting career takes off, the former NFL player still thinks he could easily go back out on the field right now and compete.
“I certainly feel like I could still [play] if I wanted to. But I always wanted to walk away when I still had something left because you never want to run until the wheels fall completely off,” Watt told Fox News Digital. “I really wanted to walk away healthy and be able to spend time with my son and my wife and to be able to enjoy those moments and to not be trying to fix things with my body.
“12.5 [sacks] last year felt great, and hopefully believe I can get 12.5 more if I wanted to, but I’m choosing to walk away. New, exciting chapters ahead.”
Watt has talked pretty openly about how he didn’t used to see a role for himself in media and didn’t respect what analysts did on TV each week. But he has a newfound respect for the work and appears to be putting the same kind of effort from his playing days into his network days now.
Watt wouldn’t be the first NFL player to move into broadcasting before returning to the field, but it sounds like he’s happy to leave those days behind and move forward.