Hard Knocks is a guilty
pleasure for many NFL fans, as it goes deep inside an NFL training camp showing
all of the good, bad and ugly from behind the scenes. But apparently one NFL
player took away much more than just drama and entertainment from the five episodes
J.J. Watt, who emerged as a
solid pass rusher for the Texans during last season's playoffs, says he was
able to figure out the Miami Dolphins snap count from the show and
used the advantage in Houston's 30-10 win on Sunday.
"You can't really pick
up too much from that show, but I got their snap count," Watt said in an
interview with NBC's Pro Football Talk. "It's something you can really
pick up from any TV copy but I watched [Hard Knocks] and that's one
thing I picked up, so I used that a little bit. But once the game gets going,
you pick it up anyway. It wasn't a huge advantage but any little thing can
And help it did. Watt
managed three tackles and 1 1/2 sacks in the Texans win, getting to rookie
quarterback Ryan Tannehill time and again on Sunday.
Beyond the Knocks talk, Watt
also delved a bit into his outlook on the Texans defense this season and how
their managing without the newly-minted $100-million man, Mario Williams. The
second-year end didn't seemed concerned by Williams' departure, though,
explaining that he feels Houston is just fine without the former No. 1 overall pick.
"I don't think it has
one bit of (an) affect on us. You see from game five on last year we didn't
skip a beat," Watt said. "He was gone — he wasn't out there Sunday
— and we played well. I don't think it matters one bit that he's not out
there. He's a great football player he's going to have a heck of a time up
there in Buffalo. But our defense is great and we're going to do just fine with
Wade Phillips and the guys that we have out there."
The Texans certainly didn't
seem to need the two-time All-Pro selection on Sunday, using Watt, fellow
second-year defender Brooks Reed and others to pressure Miami into three sacks
and three interceptions.
Watt may not think that the
minute notes picked up in Hard Knocks helped all that much in the win, but
apparently Williams' presence wouldn't have helped that much either.