When your two older brothers play football, it’s hard not to play with an edge. And now TJ Watt is bringing that edge to Pittsburgh.
In his opening press conference after being drafted less than 24 hours ago, Watt explained the influence his family has had on him throughout his football career.
“That’s the type of people we are,” he said. “It doesn’t matter if we’re on vacation or if I got drafted yesterday. I’m going to work my butt off regardless of circumstances. That’s just how my family works.”
That vacation he’s referring to is one he went with his two brothers, JJ and Derek, a 15 day trek across Europe, back in 2014. Teresa Varley had some great quotes from JJ on the trip via the team’s site.
“We’d be awake in the middle of the night so we’d we go for a jog along the Arc de Triomphe, the Champs-Elysees,” said J.J. Watt during a conference call on Friday. “We found a weight room that overlooks Big Ben…”
“The most special part about that trip was spending time with my two brothers for 15 straight days. Truly bond and grow with my brothers. It wasn’t always football but we definitely did find time to work out.”
It’s a literal brotherhood that’s existed since they were kids playing backyard football.He quipped that most of those backyard games ended with “a bloody nose or a fistfight”, a mentality that would make Steelers’ players of any era swoon.
Though Mike Tomlin and Kevin Colbert stressed the youngest Watt wants to be his own man and carve his own path, there’s no question watching two brothers make it to the NFL and see how they train and work is a peek behind the veil most aren’t afforded. It certainly doesn’t guarantee any measure of success but it’s a unique advantage and a great part of his story.