Does winning the College Football National Championship help a rookie quarterback facing the Super Bowl champions on the road?
Head coach Bill O'Brien thinks so.
"Look, it's different, obviously, it's the National Football League," O'Brien said. "But, he's (Deshaun Watson) played in some National Championship games. He's played in big games relative to the ACC in college. Just the environment, dealing with the noise, dealing with the big-game environment, I think that's important. Now, dealing with the Patriots defense relative to a college defense, that's a whole other thing. So, I'm just talking about noise level and things like that."
Deshaun Watson will get a longer workweek to prepare for the Texans Week 3 opponent, the New England Patriots. Last week, Watson got his first NFL start on a short week on the road in a primetime matchup. Watson delivered a 49-yard touchdown in the 13-9 win against Cincinnati.
Watson, who led the Clemson Tigers to back-to-back national championship appearances, apparently doesn't get nervous. He also seems to have no limitations on his handling of the playbook, according to O'Brien. The ceiling is high for Watson, who has shown dynamic playmaking on the field and a strong work ethic off of it.
"He's been in here already this morning and I think the more reps he gets – the game reps, obviously, but the practice reps, he'll get the bulk of the first-team reps now," O'Brien said. "And I think, just based on that alone and his film study and learning from week to week, he'll get better and better."
Watson was 15-of-24 for 125 yards and rushed for team-high 67 yards and a touchdown. He became the first rookie quarterback to record a touchdown in each of his first two career games in franchise history.
The (1-1) Texans travel to Gillette Stadium in Week 3 to face the (1-1) New England Patriots. Kickoff is set for 12 noon CT on CBS and SportsRadio 610.
The Texans arrived for their Thursday night matchup at Cincinnati.