Tonight's Thursday Night Football will feature one of its most troubled teams. The quarterback of this team, who has been absent for several weeks, will be the focus of discussion, even though he is not on the field.
Why are you all always filming me every single day? Deshaun Watson said the same thing to the media when he arrived at practice on August 12. The fourth-highest-paid player in the league could not understand why reporters wanted to see and hear him, even though he and the Texans had been silent about 22 sexual misconduct cases against him.
Watson isn't stupid. He is really intelligent. He was able to explain complex NFL defenses in a way even casual fans could understand.
Watson doesn't want to admit what has been happening since March. This is something his team often does. The Texans, just like Watson does not want to pretend he's the man his alleged victims claim he to be, have acted as if racism hasn't destroyed their franchise.
Cal McNair, the son of Bob McNair, the Texans' owner, said that he couldn't have the prison inmates pay hundreds of thousands to a search company to fill the general manager vacancy. According to an ESPN report, McNair was a vocal critic of Black players kneeling. Instead of hiring Omar Khan or Louis Riddick, the younger McNair hired Nick Caserio (a white man). The same franchise also hired and fired Bill OBrien (a coach who allegedly made insensitive remarks to DeAndre Hopkins at a meeting about his baby mamas. This is coded language that is used to denigrate Black people. OBrien also made the decision to trade Hopkins to Arizona, arguably the league's best wide receiver, for almost nothing.
Before the Texans and Panthers play tonight, Joe Buck will likely refer to Watson's absence and make light of his allegations about sexual misconduct. This is not because the two men aren't qualified to discuss the topic on national television, but because they are the only ones who have a microphone and can address a national audience. Watson and the Texans remain silent, trying to ignore the elephant.
The crowd booed the Chiefs and Texans for their unity and locking arms on Thursday night after the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Tamay, and Ahmaud Abery. I hope that the same people will be there tonight to boo Deshaun Watson and the Texans' front office.