Quotes: Texans DE J.J. Watt 2011 Draft Pass

For the third consecutive year, HoustonTexans.com is posting exclusive 1-on-1 interviews with key figures in the Texans’ NFL draft process in our “Draft Pass” series.

In the first segment, Texans first-round pick spoke with Drew Dougherty of Texans TV after flying to Houston on Friday afternoon to tour the team facility at Reliant Stadium.

Drew Dougherty: “Have you had a chance to take a deep breath yet? What are things like?”

J.J. Watt: “Not much of a chance. On the plane ride in here, I kind of just had a moment where I just looked out the window and took it all in. For the most part, I’ve kind of been running around, but I’m extremely excited to be a Texan.”

DD: “We got to hang out with you on the ride from the airport to the stadium, and we were up there when you met Wade Phillips and the rest of the coaches. One thing that stuck out to us was somebody said, ‘Hey, you want to go downstairs and eat some lunch?’, and you said…”

JW: “I said, ‘No, I want to get to the playbook.’ Because I know we don’t have much time right now, and I just want to get as in to the defense as I can because I know I want to help the team as much as possible.”

DD: “What type of stuff did you go through when you were talking with Wade?”

JW: “We just kind of went over some of the basic details of the defense and kind of got a preliminary playbook. He was just kind of telling me about where they see me fitting in the defense.”

DD: “What do you think you could do? What are you capable of?”

JW: “I think I can come in and play the five-technique, and I can be very effective as a pass rusher and a run stopper. They can also move me around, so I have versatility, and that’s going to help out the defense.”

DD: “Tell me about some of the guys you’re going to be playing with, your new teammates. What sort of impressions do you have of them?”

JW: “I mean, you’ve got guys like and who are two great defenders. A guy like Mario Williams, he makes everyone look good, so I’m really excited to play on the same defensive line as him.”

DD: “How special was draft night for you and family? Talk to us about what went down and who you brought with you to New York City.”

JW: “I had my mom, my dad and my two brothers, and then I also brought out two of my high school coaches because obviously they played an integral part in my success. It was such an unbelievable experience to be able to share that moment with my family and my coaches, because those are the people who made me who I am today and I can’t thank them enough.”

DD: “Once of those coaches said you’re comparable to Howie Long. You said, ‘Hold on, let me play a little bit before you start making those comparisons.’ Who are some of your favorite NFL football players of all-time?”

JW: “Well, I love watching Howie play. I love watching the way he plays the game. I like Reggie White a lot. And then in today’s world, you’ve got guys like Mario Williams, Julius Peppers, Jared Allen. So there’s a ton of great defenders, and I’m trying to become one of them.”

DD: “There’s a lot of uncertainty over the next few months, but what are you going to be doing as far as making yourself a better football player, making yourself a better Houston Texan?”

JW: “I’m just going to get to work. I’m going to get back in the weight room and start working out again on Monday, as soon as I get back home. And then as soon as they let us play some football, I’m going to get on the field and work hard.”

DD: “Aside from technique and playbook information, what other things did you get to talk with Wade Phillips about?”

JW: “He just told me that he’s excited to have me on his defense. He likes the way I play the game and he likes some of the production I bring, and obviously a lot of versatility to our defense. So it’s going to be fun to watch us play this year.”

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