Via Twitter Adam Schefter is reporting that Cardinals defensive lineman J. J. Watt is out for the year due to a shoulder injury—
Earlier this season Watt surpassed 100 run/pass stuffs, an exclusive Pro Football Journal stat that is a more reasonable stat that measures tackles behind the line of scrimmage other than sacks. That way one can add the stuffs plus sacks and in this case, Watt has 102 sacks and 101 stuffs for both for a total of 203.0 which is really stunning.
According to PFJ's Nick Webster's research only Bruce Smith, Deacon Jones, and Watt are part of the 100-100 club.
Watt is a five-time consensus All-Pro and a five-time Pro Bowls/All-AFC pick and a three-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year and other accolades like being a consistent member of the Top 100 club by the NFL Network. After the 2018 season, he was on his way to being the 3-4 defensive end G.O.A.T. or at challenging for it. He came back for two years of injuries with a 16-sack season with 7 forced fumbles to be right in line with his DPOY years.
It will be interesting if he can come back for the playoffs (we have zero idea) but we fully expect him to play in 2022 and beyond if healthy but it might be a reach for him to ever regain his 2018 level of play again.
He can still be effective, sure, but can he play 17 games? 15? Can he be a double-digit sacker and a 30-40 QB hit/pressure guy? We, again, do not know, but at 33, we'd take the under on both of those stats over the next few years, he has appears to have hit the age wall, the injury wall, and the production wall—three "alerts" if you will.
SO, unless he does that he will likely be a five-time All-Pro, five Pro Bowl guy (though making a Pro Bowl in the future is more likely than All-Pro) but he has a 100% chance of being a first-ballot HOFer but with his being injured five of the last six seasons he may have lost his chance to be on the Mt. Rushmore of defensive ends. A few years ago he seemed like a lock.
Now? Not so much.