JJ Watt is using Twitter like a secret thread for Watt-family humblebrags. Except, of course, everyone can see it. JJ responded to a tweet today from analyst Brandon Thorne who pointed out that despite missing over a month, Watt is still second in the NFL for quarterback hits/knockdowns.
Watt responded, wondering if his little brother TJ was first in QB hits. He said,
“[Tomorrow’s] Thanksgiving and I don’t need that energy on the group chat.”
TJ responded with a mischievous Alvin the Chipmunk meme to confirm JJ’s fears. And the rest of the NFL? They’re probably wondering how two of the best defensive players in the NFL came not just from the same college, not from just the same town, but from the same womb.
If two weren’t enough, there’s yet another Watt brother in the NFL. Middle brother Derek Watt plays fullback for the Los Angeles Chargers. While he certainly hasn’t climbed the ranks like JJ or even TJ, Derek is carving out a name for himself as a special teams menace.
Derek currently leads the NFL in special teams tackles with 13 (11 solo). Not bad for the third-best brother in the family.
TJ, on the other hand, is looking like he could one-day give brother JJ Watt a run for his money. TJ already made his first Pro Bowl last year in just his second NFL season. He recorded 13 sacks, six forced fumbles, and seven QB knockdowns for the Pittsburgh Steelers. This year, he’s doing even better. With five games still left to play, TJ is at 11.5 sacks with five forced fumbles and he’s tied for a league-leading 12 QB knockdowns.
As impressive as that is, he still doesn’t compare to his brother JJ. The eldest Watt recorded 20.5 sacks in his second season, a feat he repeated in 2014. Unfortunately, this will be the third season in the past four years that JJ Watt has succumbed to a season-ending injury. Despite only playing six full seasons, nfl.com ranked him as the seventh-best defensive lineman ever. On top of that, he’s adored by NFL fans. Whether he’s giving out his number on Twitter or trying to save a beloved burger chain, Watt won’t be losing any popularity contests in the near future.
The Watts’ mother Connie might have had a little something to do with the success of her sons. During an interview on the Today Show, Connie said,
I remember telling each of them there’s another child who’s going to be just as good or just a hair after you, so don’t blow this opportunity. Take every opportunity, play every down like it’s your last one, and if you’re not ready to do that, then move aside and let the next player in.
That’s the kind of psychological warfare that could keep any kid in the weight room.
A New Set of NFL Brothers Are on the Rise
The Watt family might have some competition in the coming years. Joey Bosa and Nick Bosa are two stalwart, young defensive linemen on the rise. Like TJ and JJ, Joey Bosa made his first Pro Bowl appearance after his second season in the NFL (2017). Through 11 games this year, he has 8.5 sacks and 10 QB knockdowns.
Meanwhile, Nick Bosa was drafted second overall this year by the San Francisco 49ers. He already has eight sacks, an interception, and a forced fumble, despite starting only nine games.
If they play their cards right, someday these two could be on Twitter, casually trying to recall who’s leading the league in sacks.
Last modified: June 12, 2020 6:48 PM UTC