Like father, like son? Not this time.
Like brother, like brother was the case for NFL stars J.J. and T.J. Watt of the Houston Texans and Pittsburgh Steelers, respectively, as they made extremely similar plays against the Tennessee Titans in consecutive weeks. Offensive lineman Dennis Kelly and running back Derrick Henry were unfortunately the victims in both stops.
T.J. Watt knew exactly what he had looked like on this play, too, thanks to research he had done on another veteran's matchup with Kelly. The veteran? J.J. Watt from the week before, of course.
“Watch my brother’s game last week,” T.J. Watt said to Peter King (via FMIA). “You‘ll see the same play. You’ll see it twice.
“From my study, I had a really good idea he’d run my way. The tackle got a little wider, I knocked his hand down, got inside, got upfield fast, and got to Derrick.”
Just like that... sounds easy, doesn't it? With a little research, we can all get past the 6-foot-8, 320-pound Kelly and bring down the 6-foot-3, 247-pound bulldozer that is Derrick Henry. It would also help to be, you know, a Watt.
Sarcasm aside, though, the youngest Watt (T.J., who is five years younger than J.J. and almost two years younger than fullback Derek Watt) credits his older brother's work on the defensive line in helping him to develop into a defensive player, though he weighs in at nearly 40 pounds lighter.
“...When I first moved to defense, I knew how to play the game, based on how my brother played," T.J. Watt told King. "But I can’t rush exactly like him, because he’s 290. So I watched him and learned, but I watched lots of players. I watched their steps, their rush, TV copy, coaches film."
Whoever he watched and learned from should be proud at the machine they've helped to create. And though J.J. Watt may not be ready to concede that his younger brother is officially the more productive defender — though the NFL Top 100 revealed that the players voted T.J. Watt as the No. 25 player in the league, while J.J. came in at No. 45 — he should take pride in the fact that he's helping T.J. to succeed and carry on the Watt torch of defensive line dominance.