HOUSTON (AP) — Houston Texans general manager Nick Caserio on Wednesday said Deshaun Watson has not been a distraction during training camp, but repeatedly refused to provide any clarity on his future with the team.
“We’re going to do what we feel is best for our team and organization and ... there’s no definitive answer here at this point,” he said.
Watson’s future with the team is in question after 22 women filed lawsuits alleging that he sexually assaulted or harassed them, and Houston police and the NFL are investigating the allegations.
Even before all that Watson had been unhappy with the direction of the team and requested a trade earlier this year.
Watson reported to camp to avoid being fined and participated in individual drills, but never practiced with the team, watching as Tyrod Taylor ran the offense.
Caserio said he’s had multiple conversations with Watson during camp and that he’s been at the facility every day since the Texans opened camp participating in meetings and interacting with teammates.
“His attitude’s been good,” Caserio said. “He hasn’t been a problem. He hasn’t been a disruption.”
Watson remained on the active roster Tuesday as Houston made cuts to reduce the roster to 53 players, raising questions about the team’s plans for him this season.
The answers wouldn't come Wednesday as Caserio sidestepped questions about whether he expected Watson to play for Houston in 2021.
“I’m not going to get into a lot of speculation about what has happened, what didn’t happen,” Caserio said. “It’s a waste of everybody’s time, quite frankly, I think there are more important things to talk about.”
But for this team nothing looms larger than the status of Watson, the franchise quarterback, who signed a four-year, $156 million contract extension last offseason and led the NFL in yards passing last season.
Coach David Culley hasn't officially named Taylor the starter for the opener against Jacksonville, but it seems clear that it's his job after the veteran started each preseason game and worked with the first team all camp.
As for what Watson's role will be as the season begins, Caserio remained tightlipped about his plans.
“I’m not going to comment about what’s going to happen, who’s going to play, who’s going to do what," he said. “I’d say he’s on the roster today and we’re going to take it one day at a time."
More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL