The Cleveland Browns will certainly be doing their due diligence with quarterbacks at the NFL Combine who they didn’t catch up-close-and-personal at the Senior Bowl. One of those quarterbacks was Deshaun Watson, who made headlines for bypassing on an opportunity to be coached by Hue Jackson and show off what he’s made of. At the Combine, Watson opened up about the conversation he had with Jackson leading up to the Senior Bowl:
"We had a great conversation and we talked about the national championship and the season and my participation in the Senior Bowl. Just the previous history of getting together, interviewing me and talking through this process we’re going through right now. The decision was based on me, my family, my agent and my trainer and all of the coaching staff at Clemson. We came to a conclusion that it’s best for me to sit out, get healthy and catch up on this whole draft process and getting ready for the combine so he understood that. He knew where I was coming from and there wasn’t no hard feelings and we’re all on the same page."
Like QB Mitch Trubisky, Watson said that he was also scheduled to formally meet with the Browns Friday night. Both quarterbacks appear to be in play for Cleveland with the No. 1 or No. 12 overall picks. Here are some other notes from Watson from his Combine interview:
(How would you feel about having to sit for a year?): "I wouldn't mind that. Any situation, I'll respond to it. It would be awesome to learn from a veteran guy that's been there before and I can just watch how he works and won't have to be pushed in that pressure or that moment right away. I can sit there, learn, build my game, learn the offense and make myself a better player. If it happens, it happens but it wouldn't be a factor for me."
(Biggest question teams have about you?): "The biggest question that I’ve heard from different coaches was if I can change a protection, run the offense and recognize defensive coverages. Every team I went to asked me those questions. I handled it well, answered the questions and they were very impressed. They know that I’m not just some other quarterback that’s running a spread offense. That [I’m a] guy that can operate, make good decisions and recognize what the defense is doing and be successful doing it."
(What separates you from QB class): "All the guys are great. All the guys are very competitive. All the guys have success, are going have a successful career in the NFL. Everyone works hard, everyone is motivated to be the guy in that franchise. I'd just say my past history. Starting back in high school, the way I was raised, coming from the projects home and being able to get out of that. Being the face of college football for two years, handling the success, handling all the criticism and the adversity. And then being 48-8 in high school and winning a state championship and then going to the collegiate level and being 33-3, so one thing that translates from college to the NFL is winners and I think, being a quarterback, that's the biggest thing being recognized, winning games. That's all I've been doing."