According to a source, J.J. Watt can now be taken off the injured reserve list but the Houston Texans reportedly have no plans of doing so. This could push the athlete to re-consider his thoughts about retiring early from the league.
The 27-year old athlete has been battling through various conditions since last season. In January of this year, after starting in 16 games for the 2015 NFL season, underwent groin surgery for a sports hernia. The procedure sidelined him for the rest of the season and was later on replaced by Everson Griffen.
Then, in July, he got a second surgery due to a herniated disc. Although he was able to return in Week 1, he was sidelined again because of another back injury. Since then, he has been on the Texans' injured reserve list.
Through an article on The Players' Tribune, Watt admitted that what he had gone through this year has made him consider an early retirement from professional football. After facing three surgeries in one year, Watt began to question his ability to return to the NFL.
"Some people started to wonder if I was done," he wrote. "There was a time when I genuinely wondered, 'Am I done?'"
"I didn't feel like myself," he added. "I had never even had one major surgery before, much less three in one year. To have the game taken away from me three times - each time left to wonder if I would ever be the same again - that was hard. That was the first time the word retirement had ever crept into my head."
Due to his condition, Watt has been expected to sit out the remainder of the season. However, according to NFL insider Adam Schefter, Watt is actually now eligible to come out of injured reserve this week. The problem, however, is that the Texans are not planning on activating him this year.
It is not yet clear why the Texans are keeping him on IR especially since Watt has been named as the defensive player of the year three times. Given the way the team is playing right now, the Houston squad would certainly greatly benefit from having Watt back on the defensive line.
If the Texans decide not to activate Watt this season, this move could have a serious effect on the athlete. In other words, he might begin to consider retiring before the year ends.