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By Joe Kazmar
For the Record 

Kaz's Korner

Will QB swap satisfy Houston players and fans?


Last updated 3/9/2021 at 10:08pm

Last week’s column about the possibilities of where J.J. Watt would end up was already in the paper ready to be printed to hit the streets when the blockbuster news he had signed with the Arizona Cardinals was announced.

I scrambled and added a couple of paragraphs near the end of the column and sent the column on its way to be published.

There’s a good chance the same thing might happen with this week’s Korner as many media outlets agreed with the column in Sunday’s Houston Chronicle about merely trading Texans disgruntled quarterback Deshaun Watson to join his buddies and former teammates—J.J. Watt, DeAndre Hopkins, Jonathan Joseph and Angelo Blackson—to the Arizona Cardinals.

In return, the Texans would get the Cards starting quarterback Kyler Murray—Arizona’s No. 1 overall pick in the 2019 draft—who has guided his team from the worst team in the NFL (3-13 in 2018) --to improvements of 5-10-1 and 8-8.

It’s not as far-fetched an idea as it sounds and Watson would jump at the chance to play for an offensive-minded head coach like Kliff Kingsbury. And he would love throwing passes once again to his favorite of all time target DeAndre Hopkins.

The Texans would probably balk at the idea of the trade, but if they can get a good package of starting players and draft picks from Arizona, they could probably live with it.

It’s no secret that Watson is much more advanced than Murray at this stage, but both quarterbacks are coming off their best NFL seasons in 2020.

They are similar by not being afraid to take off and run the football if their targeted receivers are covered and they are both as fast as greased lightning.

According to Sunday’s Chronicle, Murray threw for 3,973 yards last season for a 67.2 completion average, threw 26 touchdown passes and 12 interceptions and finished with a 94.3 rating compared to Watson’s 4,823 yards, 70.2 completion average, threw 33 touchdowns and 12 interceptions and finished with a 112.4 rating.

Murray would probably balk and squawk at the idea at first because he would be leaving an up-and-coming team in Arizona, but he would enjoy being the centerpiece of a rebuilding team in Houston, which is the main reason Watson wants out.

Although Murray is loved by his Cardinal teammates, the fans and the media much like Watson is in Houston, one factor that might persuade him to like and accept the deal would be that Murray has a chance to return to his home state.

Another possibility for a quarterback swap would involve the Texans and the Seattle Seahawks where quarterback Russell Wilson has hinted that he wants out of Seattle mainly because he is continually getting sacked due to a weak offensive line that he feels the organization isn’t interested in fixing.

It’s no secret that Wilson has carried the team on his back for the past decade, and his body is getting pretty beat up where he can’t be as effective scrambling and running as he was early in his career.

If this trade were to happen, Houston would not be able to get the same kind of package of players and draft picks they would get from Arizona.

But the Texans would get the franchise quarterback they are looking for in Wilson, who should have five or more good years left in his career.

The article pointed out that Houston has figured some trade scenarios with Carolina, Denver, Chicago and San Francisco, but the ones making the most sense involve teams such as a quarterback swap with the Miami Dolphins’ quarterback Tua Tagovialoa or possibly even the New York Jets’ Sam Darnold, who own the second overall draft pick they could throw in the deal.

It must be remembered that whatever route the Houston Texans take in getting rid of Watson for a franchise quarterback, it must satisfy the fanbase because the franchise has to sell sponsorships, suites, club seats and season tickets, the article concluded.

And a franchise quarterback is a must because if practice were to begin this week, the Houston Texans have only one quarterback under contract—Watson’s back-up A.J. McCarron.

KWICKIES…Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are working on a contract extension worth $50 million per season for either one year or two.

The Lamar Cardinal football team improved somewhat from their 55-0 shellacking by Nicholls State two weeks ago to be trailing only 28-20 late in the third quarter Saturday only to fall 42-20 to Incarnate Word after “running out of gas” in the final period. The 0-2 Redbirds will try to beat Southland Conference rival McNeese State Saturday in Lake Charles.

The state’s No. 1 Class 4A girls’ basketball team, the Hardin-Jefferson Lady Hawks (29-0), will take on No. 2 Canyon (29-1) at 2 p.m. tomorrow in the state tournament at the Alamodome in San Antonio.

The Houston Astros former No. 1 draft pick, often-injured right-hander Forrest Whitley, sprained an elbow ligament in spring training last week and may need Tommy John surgery, which would put him out for the rest of this season and a portion of next year.

The only bogey Bryson DeChambeau got in Sunday’s final round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill was on the first hole as he used his massive drives to overtake and outlast Lee Westwood and win by a single stroke. He needed to make a tricky five-foot putt on the 72nd hole for the win. DeChambeau 67,71,68.71—277 claimed the first-place money ($1,074,000) while Westwood, whose fiancée caddies for him, earned a not-so-paltry $1,013,700.

Congrats to the Beaumont Kelly Bulldogs for defeating Plano John Paul II 2-1 to win the TAPPS state soccer title last weekend in Round Rock. It is believed to be the program’s first state title since 1989.

JUST BETWEEN US…The 68 teams for this year’s NCAA Men’s College Basketball Tournament will be selected Sunday evening after all of the conference championships have been determined. According to ESPN’s Bracketology Monday, it has as its No. 1 seeds Gonzaga, Michigan, Illinois and Baylor, which has won all 10 home games this season. No.2 seeds include Alabama, Iowa, Ohio State and Houston while the Texas Longhorns were a No. 3 seed. Closer to home in the Southland Conference, thanks to finishing the last four games of the season with victories, the sixth-seeded Lamar Cardinals earned a first-round bye and will play the winner of Incarnate Word and Houston Baptist today at the Merrell Center in Katy. And the No. 4-seeded Lamar Lady Cardinals will get a double-bye after finishing 9-6, including 5-2 on the road, in the SLC.


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