When you have three siblings all reach the highest level of their profession, something almost surely will have gone right in terms of genetics and upbringing, particularly if that profession involves athletic requirements, as is the case with the Watt brothers in the NFL.
Oldest brother J.J. is by far the most accomplished, one of only two three-time winners of the Defensive Player of the Year Award, and virtual shoe-in to be an eventual member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame as clearly one of the greatest defensive players of his era.
Youngest brother T.J. is trying to play catch-up, and is hoping to win his first Defensive Player of the Year Award in 2020 after leading the NFL with 15 sacks. It’s not a sure thing that he wins, of course. Many though he would win last season as well, and he did not.
“He was incredible”, his eldest brother said of T.J.’s season, in an interview with Teresa Varley for the Steelers’ website. “He led the league in sacks. He led the league in tackles for a loss. He led the league in quarterback hits. He can drop back in coverage and can help his team that way. He is just a truly disruptive player who makes game-changing plays for his team and has done an incredible job. I truly believe he is deserving of Defensive Player of the Year”.
You may have seen him from time to time tweeting and retweeting posts advocating for T.J. to be the defensive player of the year, pointing out this or that statistic—or collection of statistics—for which he led the league, or was among the league leaders.
He also told Varley that he believes his younger brother was deserving of the award the year before, when he had 14.5 sacks in addition to a league-leading eight forced fumbles. But he said that he feels his 2020 season was even stronger.
“I would be extremely proud”, he said, if his little brother wins the Defensive Player of the Year Award and brings a fourth trophy into the family. “It would be a very proud moment for me. I know it would be the first of hopefully many”.
It would also be the eighth in Steelers history, with the seventh different player to win it. The previous winners are Joe Greene (twice), Jack Lambert, Mel Blount, Rod Woodson, James Harrison, and Troy Polamalu, who is the team’s most recent winner of the award back in 2010.