It can be tough to be a little brother and even tougher when your older brother sets the bar ridiculously high. T.J. Watt’s play spoke for itself at Wisconsin and helped get the linebacker drafted in the first round this year. But his big debut with the Pittsburgh Steelers spoke even louder.
In his first NFL game, Watt posted two sacks and an interception in Pittsburgh’s 21-18 win over the Cleveland Browns. He also led the team with five solo tackles.
He has a long way to go before he steps out of the shadow of his brother, J.J. Watt, a three-time Defensive Player of the Year and one of the most popular players in the NFL. But never in J.J.’s career has he had two sacks and an interception in a game.
J.J. Watt has just one career interception and he finished that game without a sack — although he did manage to return his pick 80 yards for a touchdown. T.J. Watt didn’t get as far, but it was still an impressive display of athleticism to make the grab.
The last time the Steelers had a player finish with two sacks and an interception was in 2010 when LaMarr Woodley did it in a 23-7 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals.
Watt is only the 11th player to ever do it as a rookie and the first in NFL history to do it in Week 1 of his rookie season.
His other brother, Derek Watt, is a fullback for the Los Angeles Chargers and will kick off his 2017 season on Monday night. That meant he had a chance to watch both of his brothers play and he was fired up for T.J.
There’s no doubt that J.J. is still the most famous Watt brother, but T.J. is well on his way toward making a name of his own.