Aaron Rodgers hopes Deshaun Watson 'gets to come along at his own pace'

Aaron Rodgers hasn’t met Deshaun Watson, but the two-time MVP said he is already impressed by what he has seen and heard about the Houston Texans' first-round draft pick.

“He seems like a great young man,” the Green Bay Packers quarterback said in an interview with WYFF-TV at the BMW Charity Pro-Am golf tournament in Greer, South Carolina. “Obviously very talented. He had a fantastic career. Incredible last game (at Clemson). To throw a little option route right there on the goal line to his little receiver to win (the national championship) was fantastic. He’s had a great career."

Watson, who led Clemson past Alabama for the national title, is in his first week with Houston after starting rookie minicamp last Friday. Texans coach Bill O’Brien said Watson is “a hardworking guy” who pays attention in meetings, is competitive and a lot of fun to work with. And while Watson is battling current starter Tom Savage for the chance to be under center for Week 1, Rodgers said he thinks Watson has put himself in a position to “play effectively.”

“I got to learn for three years behind a legend, and that was great for me,” Rodgers said of his time backing up Brett Favre. “I think you’re seeing the quarterbacks now coming in a lot more ready to play more than I was 13 years ago. I think he’s really put himself in a position to play and play effectively. My hope for him would be that he gets to come along at his own pace and gets in there when he’s ready and has a great career, because like I said, I’ve heard nothing but good things about him.”

Rodgers said Watson is in a good place because he is already surrounded by the elements needed to succeed.

“The key for a young quarterback is really your supporting cast,” Rodgers said. “And he’s going to a team that has some really good pieces in place. You’ve got one of the top receivers in the game in DeAndre [Hopkins], you have a solid defense with J.J. [Watt] coming back off his injury and the way that [Jadeveon] Clowney played last year, and [Brian] Cushing in the middle. So I think the pieces will be in place.

“Bill O’Brien is a very well-respected coach in this game, and if you watched 'Hard Knocks,' I think you appreciate his personality a little bit, too, the way that he coaches those guys.”