J.J. Watt will be 32 years old when his current contract expires after the 2021 season, but the Houston Texans' defensive end has no intention of seeking an extension this offseason.
Watt landed on injured reserve last October with a torn pectoral muscle, returning for the team's playoff run. However, he has failed to play more than half of the Texans' games in three of the past four seasons and knows his history of significant injuries makes it unlikely the franchise would commit to additional years at this stage.
"I fully understand and respect the situation that I'm in at the moment and what's happened in the past few years, so I'm not going to sit here and demand anything because I'm going out there to prove what I'm worth, and I believe that's the right situation for everybody," Watt told reporters Wednesday. "I think if I went back and asked for an extension, more money, anything right now, I think that would be the wrong move.
"I'm just going out there and trying to prove my worth and to help this team win games and do everything that I can to earn and make sure that these people know that I'm worth it."
Watt is four years into a six-year, $100 million contract. He is due earn $15.5 million this year and $17.5 million in 2021.
Watt underwent surgery in July 2016 for a herniated disk in his back. He attempted to return but ultimately required a second surgery that ended his season after just three games. The following year, Watt sustained a fractured leg that landed him on injured reserve for the final 11 games.
He played in all 16 regular-season games in 2018, finishing with 16 sacks and 18 tackles for loss. However, the injury bug hit again with last year's torn pec. Watt rehabbed hard in order to return for the postseason.
"My goal for every season is the same, it's to do whatever possible to help the team win," Watt said. "Obviously, No. 1, that means staying healthy. You have to be out on the field in order to help the team win.
"Then it's to play at the peak physical level that I'm capable of. I mean, I know exactly what I'm capable of doing on the field. That's my goal, is to play at that level, because that's the level that helps a team win the best.
"It's just making sure that I'm in the best possible shape and the best possible condition to perform that way."
--Field Level Media