Jul 10

Houston’s 2017 season would have looked different, but Deshaun Watson could have always been its future.

The 2017 NFL season was marked by chaos. Injuries. Feuds between players and coaches. Feuds between owners. Feuds between owners and Roger Goodell. Trump.

But there was still joy to be found in the NFL in between those pockets of turbulence. One of last season’s bright spots was just how much of a delight Tony Romo was in his transition to the broadcast booth. Each week he telegraphed plays before they happened, as if he were in possession of the Eye of Agamotto. He gave us insight into safety blitzes, man coverage, and the impenetrable mind of Bill Belichick. He was comfortable watching an inscrutable play unfold and charmingly providing an ooooh, ehhhh, pffffftttt? narration. Above all, he was clearly having a blast, and that combination of expertise and enthusiasm made listening to him a treat — even, most impressively, for Thursday Night Football games.

Maybe this works out. Let’s not prejudge anything.

Dooley’s never been an offensive coordinator or a quarterbacks coach before. He’s both at Mizzou, taking on that particular position title for the first time.

As for Nelson himself, his lateral agility seemed shot after returning, and although he still had a 1200-yard season in his return campaign in 2016, his yards-per-reception number dropped precipitously. Nelson had averaged over 15 YPR in each of the previous four seasons, but it fell to 13 in 2016 and declined even farther to a measly 9.1 a year ago.

If not for that injury, Nelson might still be a Packer and a significant offensive contributor.

This scenario looks back at what the Packers might not have done this offseason if Rodgers were around. With him starting and finishing the game last year, the Packers went 4-2; with Brett Hundley in the game, they were just 3-7. Even with a bad defense (particularly against the pass), Rodgers being on the field would likely have resulted in a few more wins and probably a playoff berth.

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