3 keys to Deshaun Watson's game-winning drives

In 2018, Deshaun Watson’s fourth-quarter and overtime comebacks have not only been impressive, they have been plentiful.

Watson’s five game-winning drives are tied with Drew Brees for the most in the NFL this season. In Saturday’s 29-22 win over the New York Jets, Watson orchestrated his latest game-winning drive when he delivered a 14-yard touchdown pass to DeAndre Hopkins. Houston took a 26-22 lead with 2:15 remaining, after the seven-play, 75-yard scoring drive. Head coach Bill O’Brien listed three intangibles necessary that Watson possesses that allow him to lead those drives when the game is on the line:

1. Poise
“That’s number one,” O’Brien said. “You’ve got to be able to think the game and think it quickly, so you can’t be a nervous wreck, that’s for sure. You’ll have no chance.”

2. Knowledge
“Knowledge of your own system, knowledge of your own players and knowledge of what you think the defense is going to do,” O’Brien said.

3. Execution
“You have to be able to make the play,” O’Brien said. “You’ve got to be able to make the throw, get us into the right protection, go to the right people. You’ve got to have good guys around you that are on the same page, no doubt about it.”

The result is a confident Deshaun Watson under center from the first drive to the last. The fourth-quarter touchdown drive against the Jets is just another example of Watson maintaining his composure under pressure.

“Just do what we do,” Watson said. “Everything is out in front of us. We have plenty of time. Don’t rush or panic. Don’t rush or press. Just take it one throw at a time and execute the play calls. In the third quarter, we got into a system and weren’t as disciplined. They had the momentum, but the last drive was where everything matters. We had to be extra focused, and that’s what we did.”

In Week 15, Watson completed 22-of-28 passes (78.6%) for 294 yards, two touchdowns, no interceptions and a 134.2 passer rating. He also added 26 rushing yards on four carries. Watson became the first player in NFL history to record at least 5,000 passing yards, 40 passing touchdowns and 700 rushing yards in a player’s first 21 career games.

Check out the best Week 15 images from Texans team photographer Zach Tarrant. Presented by Houston Methodist.

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