Deshaun Watson is either supremely confident or painfully oblivious

Deshaun Watson thinks he's 'pretty damn good' since people are criticizing him
Cleveland Browns, Deshaun Watson
Cleveland Browns, Deshaun Watson / Jeff Lange / USA TODAY NETWORK

File this one under answers no one expected. Deshaun Watson, who is entering the third season of a fully guaranteed five-year, $230 million deal with the Cleveland Browns took to the podium on Tuesday to speak with reporters.

One topic that was brought up was his criticism over the past two seasons. Rather than go into the rust he's been trying to knock off, or any other excuse, Watson went with the self-praising approach by saying - "I must be pretty damn good."

It's far from the normal response but Watson believes if he was a bottom-tier quarterback, no one would be discussing him. However, he knows he's played at a high level in the past, which he believes is the standard.

"You know, each and every fan, each and every media person, they want to see me at a level that I’m capable of doing. So, that’s the standard. So, I got to make sure I hold myself to it, so, it’s not a bad thing. It’s not anything like that. I don’t get involved with people trying to rate me places where they think I’m at the bottom of the list, you know, it is what it is. If I was at the bottom, no one would talk about me. So obviously, if anyone is talking about me, continue to talk about me, then I must be pretty damn good." — Watson said via Ryan Gaydos of Fox News

Watson could be supremely confident with this approach but he also might be painfully oblivious to the product he's actually put on the field.

Deshaun Watson is not close to 'the standard' right now

Watson is right about one thing — playing at an elite level should be his standard. Still, he's wrong to shrug off any criticism though, since he's been playing far below the standard since arriving in Cleveland.

Part of the issue is the lack of time on the field. Watson sat out the entire 2021 season with the Houston Texans and then played just six games in 2022 due to a league suspension. Injuries limited him to six games in 2023 and while the team was 5-1 in his six starts (really 4-1 since he had five passes against Indianapolis), Watson's numbers left a lot to be desired.

In two years, he's completed 59.8 percent of his attempts for 2,217 yards with 14 touchdowns and nine picks. We've heard all the reasons for him to start slow and saw him light it up against the Baltimore Ravens in his final game last year. What we need to see now is some consistency. If he can provide that, maybe we'll all start to say he's "pretty damn good."

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