DeAndre Hopkins has reeled in another miracle catch for the Arizona Cardinals.
Defensive end J.J. Watt, a teammate of Hopkins’ for seven years with the Houston Texans, posted pictures of himself on social media Monday working out in an Arizona Cardinals T-shirt.
The captions on Twitter and Instagram read, “source: me.” The team later confirmed it had reached a two-year deal with Watt.
ESPN reported the three-time defensive player of the year, who was granted his release last month after 10 seasons in Houston, received a $31 million pact with $23 million guaranteed.
Since Watt’s contract with the Texans was terminated, he is eligible to sign with any team immediately even though NFL free agency doesn’t officially begin until March 17.
In Arizona, Watt would join what appears to be an ascending team under coach Kliff Kingsburgy and quarterback Kyler Murray, both headed for their third seasons in the desert. However the Cards come off a disappointing finish to 2020, winding up with an 8-8 record – after a 6-3 start – that cost them a wild-card berth even in an expanded playoff field.
Hopkins, who famously hauled in the “Hail Murray” TD to beat the Buffalo Bills last season, had relentlessly recruited the five-time All-Pro since his divorce from the Texans, who infamously traded Hopkins to Arizona in 2020.
Watt will join a defense that finished 13th overall despite losing star linebacker Chandler Jones to a torn biceps after five games. Arizona’s pass rush could be quite formidable in 2021 with Watt joining Jones and potentially pending free agent Haason Reddick, who exploded for a career-best 12½ sacks.
Follow USA TODAY Sports’ Nate Davis on Twitter @ByNateDavis.
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