Watson is beginning his second season with Cleveland. The polarizing quarterback has thrown for over 15,000 yards with 111 touchdowns, and just 47 interceptions, but legal woes have limited the polarizing quarterback to just six games since 2022.
2022 Season in Rearview Mirror
Watson spent the first 11 games of last season on the shelf while serving a suspension for legal troubles but returned to throw for 1102 yards with seven scoring strikes alongside five interceptions. He scampered for an additional 175 yards and a TD but was clearly rusty from the long layoff.
Watson claimed to reporters after Thursday night’s contest with the Washington Commanders.
“I’m not thinking about no rust,” he said. “That was last year. I missed ball.”
Watson played just one series in the Browns’ preseason game with the Commanders, going 3-3 for a dozen yards while scrambling for 20 additional yards, and looked like the MVP contender he was with the Houston Texans.
The Browns travel to Philadelphia Thursday for their third preseason game. Watson won’t play at all against the Eagles – rookie quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson is expected to make the start, and Kellon Mond will likely play the second half of Thursday’s matchup with Philadelphia.
Is Deshaun Watson a Good Bet to Win the 2023-2024 NFL MVP Award?
No, Deshaun Watson isn’t a good bet to win the 2023-2024 NFL MVP award.
I expect Watson to have a strong season. He looks comfortable on the football field again, and the Browns coaching staff and teammates are excited about what they’ve seen from Watson during the offseason and the preseason.
Watson has thrown for over 4000 yards twice during his brief career and would need to throw for at least 4000 yards, and the Browns would need to win the AFC North. Both seem to be a tall order, but if he does chuck it for 4000, the Browns will win the division.
Watson had his best years with wideout DeAndre Hopkins – Watson has capable hands in All-Pro wide receiver Amari Cooper, but outside of that, the Browns wideouts have much to prove before we can make a future wager on Watson.
The other problem is he’ll have to have better seasons than several other quarterbacks, including Kansas City Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes, Cincinnati Bengals QB Joe Burrow, Buffalo Bills QB Josh Allen, as well as many others.
Finally, the Browns have one of the best offensive lines in the game and one of the best running backs in All-Pro Nick Chubb. Cleveland doesn’t need Watson to be the league MVP for them to win games. They need consistency and leadership from Watson, and while he will hopefully provide both, it won’t win him the 2023-2024 NFL MVP award, even with such tempting odds from FanDuel OH.
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