Deshaun Watson has become one of the fast-rising quarterbacks in the National Football League (NFL), all thanks to his excellent skills and resilience while in the field of play. The star player kicked off his professional football career in 2017 after being picked by the Houston Texans in the NFL draft. He completed his youth career at Clemson University where he led the Tigers to win different championships. Interestingly, Watson garnered wide attention in 2017 after a video of him playing Nerf basketball with the former adult movie star Mia Khalifa surfaced online. Well, he escaped the “black widow curse” much to the delight of his fans.
Deshaun Watson Life Before the NFL
The quarterback was born as Derrick Deshaun Watson on the 14th day of September 1995 in Gainesville City of Georgia in the United States. His parents separated soon after he was born and he was raised by a single mother, Deann Watson. He grew up in the Gainesville neighborhood along with his three other siblings. The talented quarterback had a tough childhood as his mother suffered from tongue cancer during his high school days. He attended Gainesville High School where he started his football career. He played the quarterback position under the guidance of Coach Bruce Miller.
During his high school career, the talented star excelled and was able to set different state records. Deshaun totaled 17,134 rushing yards and 218 touchdowns at the end of his high school career. Amazingly, he led his team to win the state championship in his senior year, thus earning a spot on the 2014 List of Top High School recruits in addition to being recognized as the 2014 Player to Watch and named to the All American Team. He continued his strong play as a sophomore and senior high school player, leading the Red Elephants to the state semi-finals.
For his college career, Deshaun enrolled at Clemson University via an athletic scholarship in 2014. There, he played college football with the Clemson Tigers for three seasons before declaring for the NFL draft. As a freshman, he was named the team’s starter and he made his career debut as a starter during a game that ended in his team’s favor against the North Carolina Tar Heels. In the course of the game, Watson recorded 435 passing yards and 6 touchdown passes, setting a school record with the latter.
During his first three games as a freshman, the young star made a total of 29 complete passes for 479 yards with 4 touchdowns and zero interceptions. However, the rest of his first college season was eventually rendered unproductive due to a series of injuries he sustained; first, a broken bone in his right hand, then a lateral collateral ligament (LCL) strain which was followed by a tweaked knee and finally an Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) tear on his left knee that had to be repaired through surgery.
The following year being 2015, Deshaun helped the Tigers to maintain a 12 – 0 record and the number one spot in the pools during the regular season. Afterward, he led the team to win the ACC Championship by throwing for 289 yards and 3 touchdowns and running for 131 yards and 2 touchdowns. For his outstanding performance, he was named the Most Valuable Player of the ACC tournament.
The stellar quarterback went on to play with the Tigers at the 2016 College Football Playoff, helping them emerge winners in the Orange Bowl with his record of 189 passing yards/one touchdown and 145 rushing yards/one touchdown. Advancing to the 2016 College Football Playoff National Championship game, Deshaun Watson accomplished a feat that had never been achieved in college football history. He recorded 478 yards, threw for more than 4,000 yards with a rushing total of 1,000 yards, and thanks to his accomplishments during the 2015 season, Deshaun received a number of accolades, including ACC Offensive Player of the Year Award, Davey O’Brien Award, and ACC Player of the Year.
As a junior in 2016, Deshaun led the Tigers to win their second national championship. The quarterback became the second player after Jason White to win the David O’Brien Award twice and consecutively. He also won the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, as well as the Manning Award in the same year. At the end of the season, he had to forgo his senior year in order to join the 2017 NFL draft.
His Professional Career Stars and Injuries
Deshaun Watson joined the NFL combine drills where he made an excellent performance. As a result of his impressive play style, the player was projected to be among the top first-round picks in 2017. He was later chosen by the Houston Texans as the 12th player overall and the third quarterback to be selected that year.
Watson made his professional debut on 10th September 2017 in their game against the Jacksonville Jaguars. After an impressive rookie season, the player was named to the PFQA All-Rookie Team; he passed for 1,699 yards and scored 19 touchdowns in seven games. His performance was affected by a knee injury which he sustained on 2nd November 2017. He had a torn ACL which ruled him out for the rest of his rookie season. Deshaun successfully underwent surgery on his right knee to fix the injury.
Returning to the active roster in the 2018 season, Deshaun played 16 games for the Texans, finishing with a career-high of 4,165 passing yards. He equally scored 26 touchdowns and made nine interceptions. Watson broke the league’s record, becoming the first player in NFL history to complete over 4,000 passing yards in a single season.
The year 2019 began for the player on a very good note. He was named to his very first Pro Bowl on January 21st and also took the 51st position on the 2019 list of NFL Top 100 Players. In the opening game for the season, Deshaun Watson recorded 20 complete passes for 268 yards, 3 touchdowns, and one interception. He also rushed for 40 yards and made a touchdown.
He also played during Week 3 in the game against the Los Angeles Chargers, contributing to his team’s victory by throwing for 351 yards and recording 3 touchdowns. In the same week, he was, for the first time, named AFC Offensive Player of the Week. He earned the same award a second time after two weeks and a third time during Week 13, as he never ceased to put up spectacular performances. By the end of the season, Deshaun had passed for 3,852 yards, made 26 passing touchdowns in addition to 12 interceptions, 413 rushing yards, and 7 rushing touchdowns.
Having established himself as a strong, dedicated, and consistent player, the Texans extended Deshaun Watson’s contract for a fifth year on the 28th of April 2020.
What is Deshaun Watson’s Career Earnings?
The quarterback began his professional career with the Houston Texans in May 2017 after he penned a four-year rookie, fully guaranteed contract worth $13,854,281 million. The deal also came with a signing bonus of $8.21 million and an average yearly salary of $3,463,570.
In 2017, Deshaun Watson earned a base salary of $403, 054, and a signing bonus worth $2,053,960. The following year, his base salary increased to $1,094,740 while his signing bonus remained the same. During the 2019 season, the player was paid $862,231 as base salary, $2,053,960 as signing bonus in addition to a roster bonus of $862,249.
For the 2020 season, Watson will receive a base salary of $1,177,123, a signing and roster bonus of $2,053,961, and $1,177,123 respectively, bringing his cap hit to $4,408,207. His salary for the coming year will increase exponentially to approximately $17.5 million following the extension of his contract through the 2021 NFL season.
Apart from his football career, the former Clemson Tigers star also makes money from other sources such as endorsement deals. Being a good-natured young man with no trace of controversy around him makes Watson a perfect role model for product consumers, especially the young football lovers. In recognition of this fact, big brands like Nike, Snickers, Rolex, and Beats by Dre have gotten him to represent their brands by signing very lucrative endorsement deals.
Who is His Girlfriend and His Relationship With Mia Khalifa?
While Deshaun Watson has been enjoying a blossoming football career, the football star hasn’t been so open when it comes to his love life. It is known that Deshaun was in a relationship with his high school sweetheart named Dallas Robson. The pair met each other while attending Gainesville High School and seeing the connection between them, they ignited their relationship. The duo remained together during his college days at Clemson; however, towards the end of Deshaun’s college studies, the pair went their separate ways.
The media went abuzz in 2017 after a video of Deshaun playing basketball with the former adult movie star Mia Khalifa surfaced online. It was his 22nd birthday, which doubled as the day he was supposed to make his NFL debut and like many others who cared about Watson, Mia sent him a happy birthday message on Twitter. Alongside the tweet was a video of the retired porn star and the then-NFL rookie playing Nerf basketball.
— Mia K. 🇱🇧 (@miakhalifa) September 14, 2017
The video raised several eyebrows among his fans who thought the two were dating. Reacting, Mia while speaking with TMZ Sports, said the 7-seconds video was shot when Watson honored her invitation to come and have a home-cooked meal at her place. She also stressed that they were nothing more than friends and there was nothing going on between them.
At the moment, Deshaun is romantically involved with Jillyann Anais Moor, former girlfriend of NFL point guard Dejounte Murray. Born on January 2, 1996, in Houston, Texas, Jillyann is a model, singer, actor, and social media personality who, like her boyfriend, is also a lover of sports. Growing up, she was involved in a number of athletic activities, including basketball, karate, soccer, volleyball, and running track. She was also a cheerleader and took part in competitive dancing.
The upcoming entertainer started gaining popularity in 2011 after she emerged winner of that year’s Miss Teen Houston. In 2015, she relocated to Los Angeles in pursuit of a modeling and acting career and has appeared in a number of television shows since then. Some of them include East Los High, Freakish, Scooby-Doo is Back, and God Send. Her singing career also took off with the release of her first single titled The Juice in 2015. Not long after she dropped the single, Miss Jilly released her debut EP also titled The Juice.
Jillyann Anais Moor and Watson had known each other (from afar) for a while before they eventually met. Narrating their love story in one of Miss Anais Youtube videos, the pro quarterback said they first saw each other physically while they were both in the company of their friends at a late-night restaurant in Los Angeles. Sitting across the restaurant from each other, they first made a kind of i-know-you eye contact before eventually waving at each other. But it ended there.
Four days later, Jillyann continued, Watson sent her a DM on Instagram, and from there, they started conversing and continued to the point of exchanging numbers and meeting for dinner the following day. From then onward, the couple has remained inseparable.