Like the rest of the country, J.J. Watt is adjusting to his new daily routine amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. The Houston Texans team facilities closed their doors mid-March and have not yet reopened for players and coaches.
"I'm trying to wade through all this information just like everybody else," Watt said Wednesday. "For me personally, I go to the gym, and the gym is obviously fully wiped down and there's protocols in place and you're not close to anybody, things like that. But other than that, I don't really leave my house a whole lot."
Watt spent the first few months of married life with his new wife, soccer pro Kealia Ohai. Currently in Chicago, Ohai is training for the National Women's Soccer League's upcoming Challenge Cup next month. Watt is now home solo with his two dogs, Tex and Finley, and picking up takeout food like Kata Robota whenever he fancies.
"So, now it's just me and the dogs down here in Houston," Watt said. "They love that because I throw the tennis ball 650 times an hour and when I'm not training that's literally all I do."
As a rookie, Watt's first NFL offseason took place during the lockout. Team facilities were closed for 132 days until a new collective bargaining agreement was reached on July 25. During the lockout year, players could still meet with each other away from team facilities, but not with coaches or staff. During the coronavirus pandemic, coaches conducted their offseason workouts virtually with the capabilities of advanced technology like Zoom meetings.
"Having gone through this type of offseason in 2011 where there were no OTA's, no minicamps, stuff like that, I do have a little bit of experience to lean on there," Watt said. "The thing that I've said is as long as you're training and doing what you need to do from a training standpoint, a running standpoint, getting yourself into the physical shape necessary for training camp, you'll be able to hit the ground running once training camp starts."