While there were rumors regarding Deshaun Watson not reporting to training camp for the Texans most of the offseason it would have been surprising if those rumors were true. According to Ian Rapoport while Watson is not happy with the team he will indeed report to training camp today.
Quarterbacks are reporting today in Houston, and #Texans QB Deshaun Watson is expected to be among them, source said. He’s showing up for testing to begin entry into training camp. However, Watson’s stance about the organization and desire to be traded remains unchanged.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 25, 2021
As with every potential veteran holdout in the NFL, Watson would have been subject to mandatory $50,000 per day fines if he held out of camp, which is the reason why so many of the players unhappy with their contracts have reported. But the financial penalties could have been more severe for Watson than other players.
Watson signed his contract just last summer and the contract contained just under $112 million in guarantees. Watson still has $82.54 million in salary guarantees remaining in the contract of which $45.54 million is fully guaranteed with the balance becoming guaranteed in 2022. Standard contract language in the NFL would typically void any and all future guarantees if Watson was to fail to report to the team or leave the team without their consent.
While normally that would not be an issue for a player of Watson’s talent level (a player like Watson would be a free agent for about 5 seconds), there are still off field issues hanging over him which could impact how quickly he would be signed and/or for how much. Reporting keeps Watson in good standing from a contractual perspective while the next steps play out with the league.
Jason is the founder of OTC and has been studying NFL contracts and the salary cap for over 15 years. Jason has co-authored two books about the NFL, Crunching Numbers and the Drafting Stage, which are widely circulated in the industry and hosts the OTC Podcast. Jason’s work has been featured in various publications including the Sporting News, Sports Illustrated, NFL Network and more. OTC is widely considered the leading authority on contract matters in the NFL.