In 2011, J.J. Watt expected to be drafted anywhere from ninth overall to the Dallas Cowboys to No. 18 to the San Diego Chargers. With the eleventh pick, the Texans were well within the range.
However, Houston was one of the last places Watt expected to land.
"If you had asked me before the draft who would have drafted me, the Texans would have been 30, 31, or 32," Watt said Thursday on "The Dan Patrick Show."
Turns out that Watt met then-Texans defensive line coach Bill Kollar at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis. Kollar, who now holds the same position for the Broncos, didn't mince words when he told the young defensive end what he thought of him. Watt, who spoke with Kollar and met him in passing in Indianapolis, recalled the conversation something like this:
Kollar: You think you play hard, don't you?
Watt: Oh yeah, I think I play pretty hard.
Kollar: I'm going to tell you right now, you're one of the laziest players I've ever seen.
And that's how Watt came up with his assessment.
"I was like, well I'm not going to Houston, Texas," Watt said.
Several months later when Watt arrived in Houston, Kollar reminded him of his words but added some extra incentive.
"Remember what I told you at the Combine," Kollar said. I'm going to get that out of you."
J.J. Watt--from his time as a Texan back to his Wisconsin Badger days--is featured here in photos.
It wasn't fun dealing with Kollar that rookie season, but Watt respected what he was trying to accomplish and the two still keep in touch weekly.
In fact, the four-time All-Pro had others who had much more scathing reviews of him during that NFL Draft process. On "The Dan Patrick Show," he displayed good sportsmanship and read some of his negative draft reviews from actual scouts.
Here are few highlights with Watt's comments in parentheses:
"Won't consistently get the edge on tackles with his get-off or quickness (that means I'm slow)."
"Plays high at times, can be blown off the ball by a double team but does fight hard to hold his ground (I do fight hard to hold my ground, Dan)."
"His recognition skills leave something to be desired (that's a knock on the old noggin). He flashes good hand usage at times but needs to get stronger at the point of attack (Do I need to get stronger at the point of attack?)"
"He needs to gain some more weight to fill out and to continue to learn how to use his hands effectively (Can you imagine what I could do if I learn how to use my hands effectively?)"
"He won't ever be a stud pass rusher. (I only wish I could be one. I only wish)."