TJ Watt Believes His Best Football Is Ahead Of Him

T.J. Watt is already among the most dominant players in football. The scary part? He thinks he can get better.

A confident Watt expressed that sentiment speaking to reporters Thursday.

“I feel like my best football is ahead of me,” he said via the Steelers’ YouTube channel. “So I’m very excited for this season.”

Hearing those comments, a lot of quarterbacks probably just got a lot less excited. Entering the sixth year of his career, Watt is one of the league’s dominant players, right up there with the likes of Aaron Donald and teammate Cam Heyward. Through five years, he has 72 sacks and ended 2021 tying the NFL record of 22.5. As we wrote about over the weekend, should Watt notch 18 sacks this season, he’ll join Reggie White as the only two players in NFL history, even pre-1982, to record 90+ sacks in their first six years.

Watt is one of Kevin Colbert’s best first-round picks, just a notch behind Troy Polamalu and Ben Roethlisberger. On his current track, Watt is on an easy path to Canton, Ohio and the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Already, he’s a four-time Pro Bowler and three-time All-Pro. According to Pro Football Reference’s Hall of Fame monitor, Watt’s HOF number sits at 53.4. That’s about halfway to the Hall of Fame average, one that is skewed by all-time greats like Lawrence Taylor. If he even stays remotely on this pace, Watt will enter sure-fire Hall of Fame status by the time he’s 30.

So where can Watt improve? He explained:

“There’s so many areas where I feel like I can improve. Just in the weight room and the offseason when I’m here just finding little details to continue to work on.”

I’m not sure how Watt can get better in the weight room unless he starts bench pressing the leg press, but he’s a Watt and always looking to gain an edge.

Where Watt can truly improve this year is staying healthy, something he rarely was last year. He played in 15 of 17 games but battled nagging injuries, broken ribs, pulled groins, and a hip bruise, and routinely left games early. If he can stay out of the trainer’s room, he has a great shot to break Michael Strahan’s (and his own) sack record in 2022. Also – and I know this will sound crazy – if Watt can do the unthinkable and reach 28 sacks this season, 1.65 per game, he’ll hit 100 sacks for his career. I’m not saying Watt will do it. But if anyone can, it’s him.

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