Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt will likely start on Sunday against the Chicago Bears, and he will not be on a snap count, according to the Houston Chronicle. Watt underwent back surgery to repair a herniated disc in late July.
Watt missed time throughout training camp and the preseason, and he was limited in practice on Wednesday and Thursday. But on Friday, Watt was upgraded to full participation and it looks like he’ll be good to go against the Bears.
The news that Watt won’t be on a limited snap count doesn’t necessarily mean he will play the entire game. Watt traditionally plays 100 percent of defensive snaps, but he could see a somewhat reduced role, even if the Texans don’t plan on keeping him on a strict snap count.
Watt is considered the best defensive end and perhaps the best defensive player in the entire NFL. The difference he makes on the field is significant and it sounds like, even if he’s not completely at 100 percent, he will be an asset on the field.
Watt, 27, was a first-round pick in the 2011 NFL Draft and has been named to the Pro Bowl four times. He was also a first-team All-Pro in each of the past four seasons, and has earned NFL Defensive Player of the Year honors three times. Last season, he was the NFL sacks leader, an honor he also held in 2012.