Watson was scheduled to yell "Play ball!" before the matchup between the Astros and Nationals on Wednesday night, but he was kicked in the eye on Sunday during a game against the Oakland Raiders. He threw a touchdown pass on that play and later came back into the game for the final offensive drive.
Actor and noted Texan Matthew McConaughey replaced Watson for the festivities at Minute Maid ParkWearing the same orange jersey the team was wearing Wednesday night, McConaughey worked the packed crowd into a frenzy by asking: "Houston are you ready," when he took the microphone.
Earlier, two of Houston's famed Killer B's, Hall of Famers Craig Biggio and Jeff Bagwell threw out ceremonial first pitches simultaneously. Biggio made his toss to pitcher Collin McHugh and Bagwell threw his to pitcher Lance McCullers.
The Texans play the Jacksonville Jaguars in London on Sunday. Watson will make the trip to London and play, but in the meantime he needs to stay out of the light while his eye heals.
"I feel fine. It looks bad. It's going to look worse before it actually gets better, but I'm actually good," the Texans QB said. "It's definitely a great opportunity, a great moment that the Astros and the organization was giving me, but I think the best way -- especially with my season going on and us going to London -- was to kind of rest up.
"But I'll definitely be supporting them, watching them and I'll definitely try to give all the positive, good vibes so they can pull it off."
Watson, who was a full participant in Wednesday's practice, said he is not sure whether he will wear a visor going forward, but that he has worn one before and "it's not a big deal" to do so.