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2 teams emerge as potential Deshaun Watson landing spots

We’re no more closer to Deshaun Watson finally being traded by the Houston Texans. After sitting out the entire 2021 season due to off-field issues, Watson very much remains an enigma around the nFL.

Obviously, we’re talking about the allegations of sexual misconduct from north of 20 women. Watson’s lawyer believes that a decision will be made on criminal charges early next month. As for the civil cases, findings in that regard have also been pushed back some.

With that said, some NFL teams are willing to trade for Watson should authorities not charge him criminally.

We now have more information on this from Aaron Wilson of Pro Football Network. The NFL insider reported on Sunday that the Carolina Panthers and Washington Commanders remain interested in Watson with the Philadelphia Eagles doing their due diligence.

This isn’t necessarily earth-shattering news. Panthers owner David Tepper has been interested in Deshaun Watson for well over a calendar year. Meanwhile, Washington just offered up the house to the Seattle Seahawks for Russell Wilson.

Related: Ideal Deshaun Watson trade scenarios

Washington Commanders as a legit landing spot for Deshaun Watson

Deshaun Watson
Dec 20, 2020; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson (4) passes the ball against the Indianapolis Colts in the first half at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

On the surface, adding someone like Watson to the mix might not be the best decision for Washington right now. The team is still embroiled in a major scandal surrounding workplace misconduct allegations. Said scandal now directly involves owner Daniel Snyder and is sexual in nature.

That’s just on the surface. Let’s say Watson is not charged criminally. That would give the Commanders a front to add him to the mix in a blockbuster trade.

It’s also not a secret that Washington is chasing after big-name quarterbacks. That includes both the aforementioned Wilson as well as every signal caller available on the trade market.

“How serious are the Commanders in their search for a QB? Sources say they made a strong offer to the Seahawks on Russell Wilson. It didn’t go anywhere. But a sign Washington is ready to deal. And given what they have on their roster, they may be a QB away.”

NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport on Twitter

Coming off a seven-win season, quarterback is the primary issue in Washington right now. It signed Ryan Fitzpatrick to be a stopgap option last offseason, only to see the veteran play in just one game due to injury. Taylor Heinicke simply isn’t a starter-caliber quarterback right now.

Washington boasts tremendous skill-position talent in running back Antonio Gibson and wide receiver Terry McLaurin. It also has one of the best young defenses in the NFL. Adding Deshaun Watson to the mix would make this team a legit contender in the NFC.

Related: Updated NFL trade rumors

Carolina Panthers’ infatuation with Deshaun Watson

Deshaun Watsonm Washington football team
Dec 13, 2020; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson (4) looks on before the game against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports

As noted above, David Tepper has been searching for that true franchise quarterback. Acquired last offseason, Sam Darnold has shown once again he’s not the answer. It has head coach Matt Rhule firmly on the hot seat following an ugly five-win season.

As with Washington, these Panthers might be a quarterback away from contention. They have some tremendous wide receiver talent in D.J. Moore and Terrace Marshall Jr. as well as former All-Pro running back Christian McCaffrey.

Unfortunately, Carolina does not have its second-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft due to the aforementioned trade for Darnold. It would have to offer up first-round selections in each of the next three years as well as a young playe or two. Is that a price Tepper and Co. are willing to pay? We’ll see. But desperation calls for desperate measures.