The Texans traded their 2017 first-round pick (No. 25) and their first-round pick in 2018 to the Cleveland Browns to acquire the No. 12 pick and select Watson. Despite the high price, Texans general manager Rick Smith and coach Bill O'Brien said Thursday night that Tom Savage would be the Texans' starter next season.
When Watson was asked whether he would embrace the role of backup while learning the playbook, if that's what the Texans want to do, he said, "I think that's the best way."
"Learn from the veteran guys, play whatever role I have," Watson said in his introductory press conference on Friday. "But my main focus is getting here, learning about this city, learning about this organization, learning this system, and just being the best teammate I can be, whatever role that is. And just enjoying that."
"I know it's going to be a challenge, which is what I'm up for. But also, I have a lot to learn, so I'm anxious to get here and get to work and learn from Brandon Weeden and Tom Savage, two guys that I'm a huge fan of, who I watched when they were in college. So it's going to be a fun ride."
Since the Texans traded their 2016 starting quarterback, Brock Osweiler, to the Browns last month, Smith and O'Brien have repeated that they are "comfortable" with Savage starting in 2017. Both have also said it is challenging for a rookie quarterback to start. Regardless, Watson will have the chance to compete with Savage for the starting job during OTAs and training camp.
In his senior season at Clemson, Watson threw for 4,593 yards and 41 touchdowns, leading the Tigers to a national title.