HOUSTON (SportsRadio 610) -- For the first time since trading Jadeveon Clowney more than a year ago, the Texans will face their former No. 1 overall pick Sunday as a member of the Tennessee Titans.
Clowney has yet to record a sack and has just two tackles for loss in four games for the Titans this season. But his former coaches in Houston understand how disruptive the edge rusher can be for an offense.
“I think we know what his ability is and it looks like he’s using all of the ability he has,” Texans interim head coach Romeo Crennel, who coached Clowney for all five seasons he played in Houston. “He’s a very disruptive player. He has good length. And he chases the ball. So, we’re going to have to do a good job of blocking him. Might have to double team him sometimes, maybe try to trick him if we can. I expect a great game from him and he’s going to try to play his best.”
Clowney was expected to play under the franchise tag for the Texans last year, but was traded to the Seattle Seahawks shortly before the season.
The Texans received outside linebackers Jacob Martin, Barkevious Mingo and a third-round pick in return. Martin has become a regular contributor on defense for the Texans.
They traded the third-round pick to the Raiders midseason in exchange for cornerback Gareon Conley, who contributed in 2019 but has been injured for all of this season. Mingo now plays for the Chicago Bears.
On the same day the Texans shipped out Clowney, they traded two first-round picks and a second-rounder to Miami for left tackle Laremy Tunsil and wide receiver Kenny Stills.
Tunsil went on to have his first Pro Bowl season with the Texans last year, and has since become the highest paid tackle in football.
Clowney ultimately played for Seattle under the franchise tender for just under $16 million last season, but did not garner the long term mega deal he was hoping for in free agency.
The Titans signed Clowney to a one-year deal worth $13 million in early September.
Whenever Clowney and Tunsil matchup Sunday, it will be appointment viewing.
“When you have two very talented athletes going against each other, it should be a good matchup,” Crennel said. “I hope that we win more of that matchup than we lose. But two good players going, sometimes one is going to win and sometimes the other is going to win. Hopefully we win more of those one-on-ones.”
J.J. Watt described his former teammate as someone who can do anything in the run game, but who also takes chances and gives offenses opportunities.
"He's a very disruptive player, especially in the run game," Watt said. "He can do just about anything in the run game. He can cut inside. He can cut outside. He can knock a guy back. He can make a massively explosive play in the backfield. He can chase guys down. He's powerful. He's quick. He's fast. He's a very good player. So you've got to account for him at all times.
"He'll take some chances and make some big plays off it, and also give you some opportunities at the same time. So you've got to be aware of where he is at all times, because at any point he can make a big play."