The Houston Texans haven't been willing to listen to trade offers for Deshaun Watson this offseason, despite the star quarterback making it clear that he wants to go elsewhere.
That stance has changed according to Tom Pelissero and Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.
"The Texans are now willing to listen—and have been for some time—to trade offers for star QB Deshaun Watson, multiple sources tell me and Ian Rapoport," Pelissero tweeted. "But the price is high for a player of his caliber, and should be. It’d likely take at least three first-round picks and more."
On the surface, asking for three first-round picks for a player like Watson is reasonable. He's only 25-years-old and has been named to the Pro Bowl three times. He's also entering year one of a four-year, $156 million contract extension.
Unfortunately for the Texans, things aren't that simple. Watson is currently facing civil lawsuits accusing him of sexual misconduct against 22 women. The NFL didn't put Watson on the commissioner’s exempt list prior to the start of training camp.
The lawsuits could drive down his trade value at minimum, but the fact that he wasn't placed on the exempt list (yet), is a good sign for the Texans, who obviously want to get as much as possible in a potential trade. No criminal charges have been filed.
“Interested teams have done homework on Deshaun Watson’s legal situation,” Pelissero tweeted. “The NFL hasn’t placed him on the exempt list and the civil cases won’t go to trial this year. If a team gets comfortable with that piece, it’s a rare opportunity to acquire one of the NFL’s best young QBs.”
Watson reported for Texans camp over the weekend, which is probably why the organization changed its' stance and is willing to listen to offers for their star quarterback.
The Eagles and Dolphins are two of the many teams that could pursue Watson now that he's available.
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