While wading through an offseason of endless tropes, it's sometimes refreshing to hear a little dose of truth from an NFL player. But Texans fans might not appreciate the reality that first-year quarterback Deshaun Watson was spilling during the team's rookie minicamp.
Watson is coming off a College Football Playoff title victory over Alabama with Clemson but was facing criticism about his ability to make the transition from Clemson's system to an NFL team. On Saturday he described learning the Texans playbook as "like learning Spanish" and said learning the playbook is "going to take time."
"It's a whole different terminology. It's like learning Spanish if you don't know Spanish," Watson said. "You have to flip everything you learned before and turn a page and learn something brand new and make sure you are on the same page with not just the coaches, but your teammates. Telling everyone what to do and doing things that I haven't done before.
"It's going to take time and I'm going to continue to improve each and every day."
It's also worth noting that a quarterback is going to face a much bigger hurdle from college to the pros. And these are different systems we're talking about too -- O'Brien has a highly complex system and said that for Watson it is literally like "learning a new language."
"Obviously, our verbiage is a lot different than what he had at Clemson, and that's the same for every rookie that is here relative to their college. It's like learning a new language. That's the way that I describe it to people that aren't coaches and players. It's learning a new language," O'Brien said. "It's having to repeat it over and over again and then understand what it means, what each part of the play means to everybody in the huddle and then it's what is the read of this play? Where are we directing this run? What type of defense are they in? I mean, it's just like on and on and on. It's just so much information that we throw at these guys, especially the quarterback position."
So even though there's a steep learning curve here, it is May. There's ample time for Watson, who worked his tail off at Clemson and was, for lack of a better term, just a winner at every stop, to figure out what he needs to figure out in this playbook to get ready for the start of the season.
O'Brien has said that Tom Savage is going to be the starter, but anyone paying any attention certainly thinks that Watson will be given a shot to win the job considering where he was drafted (No. 12 overall) and how much the Texans paid to acquire him (two first-round picks plus the cost of getting rid of Brock Osweiler).
If Waston can just figure out to habla Espanol in a quick fashion, the Texans will be extremely enthused.