J.J. Watt had quite the close call last season: the Texans star divulged in a Players’ Tribune piece that he nearly lost his leg to a staph infection.
Watt, who is currently out for the season and has battled all sorts of injuries over the past couple years, said the infection was the scariest health problem he’s faced.
“One Friday night last season, I noticed some weird bumps on my knee,” Watt wrote. “I thought it was a rash, so I went and asked our trainer if he had any cream. He looked at my knee and said, ‘That looks really bad. We have to get you to the hospital right now.”
Watt went on to receive treatment and actually played in that weekend’s game — on antibiotics — for the Texans. He had been listed as questionable with an illness.
“I thought he was joking at first. But then I could see in his face that he was serious and actually a bit panicked. As it turned out, he saved me in a big way. At the hospital, they immediately put me on three hours of the strongest antibiotic IVs. I went straight from the hospital to the team plane and we flew to Jacksonville. Once we landed, there were two more hours of antibiotics that night and two more the next morning before the game. The medicine had completely drained me, but I played — and we won.”
On the flight back to Houston, a team trainer told Watt how serious his condition was, and that he could have needed his leg amputated had he not received care when he did.