Deshaun Watson will have chance to start immediately for Houston Texans

TAMPA, FL - JANUARY 09: Quarterback Deshaun Watson
TAMPA, FL - JANUARY 09: Quarterback Deshaun Watson /

Deshaun Watson will be given the keys to the starting role from Week 1 if he’s able to beat out the competition for the Houston Texans.

Unlike Patrick Mahomes, who will be forced to sit for a year for the Kansas City Chiefs, the Houston Texans have said Deshaun Watson might be able to start from the very beginning of his rookie season. General manager Rick Smith stated that Watson will be given the opportunity to win the starting quarterback job from the outset.

"“We want to provide a competitive environment across the board. So [Watson will] compete,” Smith said Thursday on the Stephen A. Smith Show on ESPN Radio. “[But] like I said, we feel good about Tom and his abilities to manage the offense. But yeah, [Watson] will come in, and just like every other guy on the roster, he’ll have time to play.”"

Mahomes and Watson will forever be linked as part of the class of 2017, two rookie quarterbacks taken with only a single pick between them. The Chiefs eschewed Watson despite his intangibles and winning resume for the bigger arm and projected ceiling, and the Houston Texans also traded up to pounce on Watson after the Chiefs passed. It’s likely that the pair will compete against each other in the AFC for years to come, so comparisons are likely to come early and often.

The Chiefs plan to sit Mahomes as long as necessary since they have a winning incumbent in Alex Smith, who has 41 wins in his four seasons in K.C., including the team’s first playoff win in years.