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Deshaun Watson trade rumors: Dolphins end all speculation

Tennessee Titans v Houston Texans Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

The Miami Dolphins have been linked to Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson since the offseason. The will-they-won’t-they speculation for Miami continued into the 2021 regular season and continued to heat up as we approach the NFL trade deadline at 4pm ET today. The Dolphins officially are out of the pursuit however, a move that should end any possibility of the Texans moving Watson this year.

Miami was tempted by Watson, a speculation that seems as close to fact as possible, despite having selected Tua Tagovailoa with the fifth-overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. Watson would likely provide stability to the quarterback position in a way Miami has not seen since Dan Marino’s retirement. Of course, that is based on the assumption that Watson would be available to play. That is not a guarantee, and likely a part of why no trade materialized this week.

Watson is facing 22 civil lawsuits alleging sexual assault and misconduct stemming from massages he has received. There are also ongoing criminal investigations into the quarterback, and then there are questions about whatever disciplinary action the NFL could take sometime in the future. The Dolphins were believer to want a lot of the questions surrounding Watson answered prior to making any trade for him.

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Dolphins are now completely out of the trade for Watson. Schefter wrote on Twitter, “Although the Dolphins did due diligence on Deshaun Watson and had conversations with Houston, Miami will not make a trade for the QB, per source. Dolphins’ owner Stephen Ross, who had contingencies that needed to be met for any deal, made the final decision to not move forward.”

He added, “While Miami considered bringing in Deshaun Watson, no deal ever was in place and the Dolphins will stick with Tua Tagovailoa, a young QB who has shown improvement this year.”

The Dolphins sticking with Tagovailoa and continuing to try to build a young team always seemed like the most likely outcome to this situation. The Dolphins just used a first-round pick to select a player most people had as the first-overall pick before he sustained a hip injury. It seemed rushed to give up on him, plus send away multiple first-round picks, to get Watson.

Of course, if Tagovailoa does not continue to grow throughout the remainder of the 2021 season, the Dolphins could revisit the possibility of trading for Watson in the offseason.