Mutual respect between Watt, Matthews

HOUSTON -- Everyone wondered how Atlanta Falcons rookie right tackle Jake Matthews would fare this week in joint practices against the Houston Texans and pass-rush demon J.J. Watt.

Well, Matthews held his own over the last two days. And Watt recognized it.

"He's got good potential," Watt said of Matthews. "Obviously, he's a young guy. He comes from great pedigree. And I think that he's going to be a pretty good player down the line."

Matthews, naturally, expressed mutual respect for one of the league's best pass-rushers. Watt has 36.5 sacks in three years with the Texans.

"He's a hell of a player," Matthews said of Watt. "He's really good. That was something I needed because I want to go against the best players and be the best player I can be. He's going to show you all the best looks in the league, so that was really good."

Matthews will get one more good look at Watt on Saturday when the Falcons and Texans battle in each team's second preseason game.