As the Nov. 2 NFL trade deadline swiftly approaches the rumors are heating up. We pretty much know that the Houston Texans’ Deshaun Watson is going to be traded. At least, that’s what everyone, including Watson, is hoping.
The Miami deal was reportedly done, but now the Carolina Panthers have resurfaced as potential trade partners.
“Hey Tua thanks for everything you’ve done for Miami, I wish you the best in Washington or where ever you end up, your locker will be given to Deshaun Watson so clean it up after the game” pic.twitter.com/3GAzSP2f51
— Clutch City Entertainment (@ClutchCityENTX) October 24, 2021
While most 11th-hour trade talks are nothing more than smoke and mirrors, this latest rumor may actually carry some validity.
Word on the streets is that the Carolina Panthers are willing to part ways with star running back “Run CMC,” aka Christian McCaffrey, and three high picks for the services of the young, uber-talented but currently embattled quarterback Deshaun “I Never Met A Massage Parlor I Didn’t Like” Watson.
— New York Post Sports (@nypostsports) October 30, 2021
Panthers Need A QB To Run Joe Brady’s Offense
The Panthers thought they found their signal caller of the future when they traded for New York Jets QB Sam Darnold after having Teddy Bridgewater man the job in 2020.
The team has been searching for former NFL MVP Cam Newton’s replacement since they decided to move on from the franchise’s revenue-generating player.
Carolina has lost four in a row after starting the season 3-0. Darnold’s been awful.
This defense, which is really good and recently added former 2019 NFL Defensive Player of the Year Stephon Gilmore via trade a few weeks ago, is in win-now mode but being held back by the offense.
With the NFL trade deadline Tuesday at 4 p.m., this rumor shouldn’t be taken lightly.
Panthers offensive coordinator Joe Brady is a brilliant young mind with a great offensive scheme that is being held hostage by bad quarterback play.
We saw what he did with Heisman Trophy-winning passer Joe Burrow in 2019 at LSU, setting record after record.
Brady comes from the Saints coaching tree under Sean Payton and offensive coordinator Pete Carmichael.
Brady has yet to find a quarterback who can execute his scheme properly. Watson would allow Brady to take off the training wheels and really open it up.
Watson Would Be A Great Fit
Watson’s all-world skill set is perfect for Carolina’s offense, which is very similar to what he ran under former Texans coach Bill O’Brien and under Dabo Swinney at Clemson.
Brady would be able to unload his entire offense on a guy like Watson, and the weaponry (DJ Moore, Chuba Hubbard, Torrance Marshall Jr, Robbie Anderson) that the Panthers have would no longer be inhibited by the passer.
Watson’s arrival would also give head coach Matt Rhule a sense of calm so he can continue to develop the defense, which is his specialty. Watson is that good.
Jason LaCanfora of CBS Sports reports that his sources say Panthers owner David Tepper has long wanted Watson but two things have stood in the way.
— ThePanthersWire (@ThePanthersWire) October 30, 2021
“The price was too high and Watson would have to waive his no-trade clause.”
“That’s it. He’s wanted him for a long time. And there’s still a lot of time between now and Tuesday. His patience is wearing thin.”
There are also conflicting reports saying that the Panthers are out of the running for Watson.
Like others have said, nothing we have gathered suggests the Panthers are still pursing Deshaun Watson before the deadline, nor were the Panthers willing to trade Christian McCaffrey.
Conversations with the Texans ceased earlier this week, as previously reported.
— Jonathan M Alexander (@jonmalexander) October 30, 2021
Panthers' position on Deshaun Watson hasn't changed: They re-engaged with Houston again this wk, but they're not expected to be players for him before Tuesday's trade deadline, per three sources.
Sources also say Christian McCaffrey wasn't part of the talks.
— Joe Person (@josephperson) October 30, 2021
There’s a lot going on here but somebody is not being totally honest. We just don’t know who. The legal ramifications if Watson is found guilty of any of the accusations levied against him also complicates things. In any event, the Panthers would be wise to keep looking into it.
Panthers Need To Move On From Christian McCaffrey
It’s no secret how dynamic “Run CMC” is when healthy, but he rarely is. Since being drafted in 2017 he’s started just 48 of a possible 71 career games.
The former Stanford star has been unavailable for 33 percent of his career.
On the flip side, “White Lightning” is a top-three all-purpose back in the league when healthy. The Texans are pretty much devoid of talent and adding a multi-dimensional threat would make them more entertaining.
Watson Sweepstakes Heats Continues
This story is still very fluid and has many moving parts, and Watson’s preferred destination is still Miami.
In the business of football and money there are a lot of hypotheticals, and this is one that makes sense.