Sean Pendergast

J.J. Watt, DeAndre Hopkins Now Out For Season, Is There a Hex on Former Texans?

J.J. Watt is one of many prominent former Texans that has experienced a season ending injury.
J.J. Watt is one of many prominent former Texans that has experienced a season ending injury. Photo by Eric Sauseda
There is not much he Texans have done right this season, and because of that, many of the former Texans who have found new homes around the league in better, brighter football places have been able to bask in the glow of, well, NOT being on a 2-11 football team. Hell, some of them even landed with Super Bowl contenders. Many of them, in fact.

However, if there is one message the football gods may have sent to those former Texans this season it is this — be careful how much you bask, for the karma of the Former Texans Hex is real, and depending on how you feel about some of your former steel blue heroes, it is spectacular.

To be clear, we don't wish injury upon anybody. Doing so is just a recipe for even worse karma than the mojo one gets from firing barbs at a defenseless punching bag like the Texans. However, you have to be completely blind not to notice that former Texans everywhere are getting thrown into surgery and hospital beds like sacks of garbage in a landfill.

Yesterday, the Hex got the seemingly un-gettable DeAndre Hopkins, as it was reported he would likely miss the rest of the regular season with a knee injury. So let's start there with the former Texans who've been zapped by the injury bug:

Here was Adam Schefter's tweet from Wednesday on the Hopkins injury:
And here was Ian Rapoport, of the NFL Network, with more on the injury (including footage of the play that i cured Hopkins):
This injury is incredibly noteworthy, as it means that Hopkins will finish this season having participated in just 10 games. To put that in perspective, Hopkins missed two games TOTAL in his first eight seasons in the NFL. Wow.

If you're looking for the trolling and piling on that might have angered the gods, Hopkins DID tweet out this picture of falling dominoes the day that Deshaun Watson demanded a trade from the Texans:
To be clear, he didn't tweet pictures of game pieces when the lawsuits started piling up on Watson. He's kept mum on that.

J.J. WATT, DE, Cardinals
Hopkins' teammate, the great J.J. Watt, was hurt in Week 7 this season. Ironically, it took place in the matchups with his former team, the Texans, and even mroe ironically, took place u successfully chasing down rookie quarterback Davis Mills, who is not exactly known for his athleticism. The injury was to Watt's shoulder, and according to reports, it involved tearing pretty much everything from the labrum to the biceps. There are reports that Watt might make it back for the Super Bowl, if the Cardinals make it that far.

If we are looking for what might have angered the football gods from Watt, who has been quite classy in the aftermath of his departure, perhaps this non answer in his pre-Week 7 game presser? Maybe?

Cobb was one of Bill O'Brien's worst signings as a general manager, inking a three year, $27 million contract that the Texans gave him in a bidding war against themselves back in March 2020, right after trading Hopkins. After one injury plagued season in Houston, Cobb was able to get out of town when Aaron Rodgers demanded that the Packers trade for his former teammate. Unfortunately for Cobb, he suffered a core muscle injury last week, and is done for the season.

Possible karmic infraction for Cobb? Comparing Houston to prison....
If you're looking for an even worse contract given out by O'Brien, look no further than defensive end Whitney Mercilus, who was given a four year, $54 million deal at the end of 2019, and then proceeded to turn into a football corpse the next day. Unlike Cobb, who was traded, Mercilus was cut because no one was dumb enough to trade for him. Mercilus tore a biceps muscle and was out for the season after three games as a Packer. At his initial Green Bay presser, Mercilus said implied that the Texans had issues from the "tippy top" on down, and made a big deal about how the Packers "invest in" their players, as if the Texans never invested millions in him.

Fuller has played all of 65 snaps for the Dolphins after signing a one year, $10 million contract this past offseason. He's had issues ranging from the usual soft tissue stuff to hand issues to the dreaded "personal issues." I don't think Fuller did anything to invoke bad karma, he's just hurt all the time.

So, after reviewing that list once more, all I have to say is "Deshaun Watson, be careful what you wish for. You just might get it."

Listen to Sean Pendergast on SportsRadio 610 from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. weekdays. Also, follow him on Twitter at and like him on Facebook at
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Sean Pendergast is a contributing freelance writer who covers Houston area sports daily in the News section, with periodic columns and features, as well. He also hosts afternoon drive on SportsRadio 610, as well as the post game show for the Houston Texans.
Contact: Sean Pendergast