This year teams have to worry about his

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  • HOUSTON - J.J. Watt has long been feared for his sacks and swats.This year teams have to worry about his receiving skills, too.The 6-foot-5, 289-pound defensive end had another touchdown catch in Houstons win on Sunday to give him three this season. He has one more touchdown reception than star receiver Andre Johnson and more than all of the Texans tight ends combined.Defensive co-ordinator Romeo Crennel has enjoyed watching the big guy, who began his college career as a tight end, have some fun on offence.He goes after the ball like he goes after the quarterback and both of those are good, Crennel said.Watts work on offence hasnt slowed down his production on defence. He leads the team with 11 1/2 sacks and is first in the NFL with a franchise-record five fumble recoveries and 36 quarterback hits. He also has a fumble return for a touchdown and another score an interception return.Hes found someone to talk to about playing on the opposite side of the ball in assistant coach Mike Vrabel, a former linebacker who had scored a touchdown on each of his 12 career receptions.Watts following in his footsteps in that way with each of his grabs going for scores as well.He has definitely helped, Watt said. I think that he might have helped in getting the package in the first place. He has given me some tips.Watt wouldnt divulge any of the insider information hes received from Vrabel, but he did share one thing the three-time Super Bowl champion told him.Spike the ball when you score. Thats the one he is adamant about, so I try, he said. I was so excited this week I couldnt even hold on to the thing when I stood up.Vrabel declined an interview request for this story.But Houstons top receivers had plenty to say about Watts receiving skills. DeAndre Hopkins, who leads the Texans with 1,041 yards receiving and six touchdown receptions, laughed when asked if Watt was a good receiver.No. But he makes plays so thats all that matters, Hopkins said. The in between stuff really isnt a big deal if you go out and make plays. But as far as being receiver, nah.Watts first receiving touchdown was an easy one. He was wide open in the end zone and simply waited for the ball to get to him for the 1-yard score. The second two have been a little more difficult. Watt had to dive in the end zone to grab both of those.Hopkins said whats perhaps most impressive about Watts receiving is that teams know the balls going to him, but still cant stop it.Ninety-five per cent of the time you know that if J.J.s out there hes getting the ball, hes not going to waste his time, Hopkins said.Johnson knows some people are surprised with Watts work on offence, but the hes not one of them after watching him play defence for four seasons.He has great hand-eye co-ordination, Johnson said. You dont really see guys pick balls off at the defensive line position unless they have bounced around on somebody. He can just jump right up in the air and pick the ball off ... ever since he has been here he has always run around and caught balls with us. I always tell people its not surprising for us to see it because we get to see it every day.Watt joked that the offensive plays are so much more complex than those on defence that hes often confused when preparing for a play on offence.I have no idea what theyre saying in the huddle on offence, he said. I swear to God. I have no clue what the play calls are or anything. I know my little gambit of plays. I know what Im supposed to do on those.Watt said hell look at the quarterback after he calls the play and ask him to break it down for him.I just say: Hey which one is this? Hell be like: This is the one where you do ..., and I say: Oh OK, sure. Cool, Watt said.Houston coach Bill OBrien marvels at all the things Watt can do and said hes unique because along with defensive end he can play defensive tackle, nose tackle, linebacker and, of course, tight end.He is definitely one of the most versatile players Ive ever been around, OBrien said. The thing ... I think sets him apart is his work ethic, the way that he approaches every single day. Hes got tremendous talent, but he really does a great job of working extremely hard every day to get the most out of that talent.Hopkins said Watt hasnt asked him for any pointers on offence, but that he does talk a little trash about how hes going to score more touchdowns than the receiver this season. Those conversations leave Hopkins shaking his head.I never thought Id be having a conversation with a defensive end about scoring touchdowns, Hopkins said with a smile.Watts performance has some wondering if he could become the first defensive player to win MVP since Lawrence Taylor in 1986, but the odds are probably stacked against him.Its hard for a defensive player that doesnt touch the ball as much, its hard for him to be an MVP, Crennel said. But to this point, J.J. has touched the ball and scored touchdowns, so some of those people who like offensive guys might consider him.___AP NFL website: and Sam Shields Rams Jersey .com) - A pair of Eastern Conference rivals will meet on Saturday as D. Brandin Cooks Rams Jersey . -- So much for concern that running back Marshawn Lynch would be absent from the Seattle Seahawks minicamp. . Louis Cardinals, the team will be celebrating the 25th anniversary of the opening of the SkyDome. Jays legends Jimmy Key and Ernie Whitt, members of playoff and World Series-winning teams of the past, will be on hand for the festivities to look back at what was the beginning of the Jays halcyon years. Sam Shields Jersey . Expensive. The NFL fined Tomlin $100,000 on Wednesday for interfering with Baltimores Jacoby Jones on a kickoff return in the third quarter of a 22-20 loss to the Ravens on Thanksgiving night. Ndamukong Suh Jersey . 5 Trade Deadline is drawing closer and teams will be deciding on whether to buy or sell while figuring out which players can make the biggest difference and hold the greatest value.STUTTGART, Germany -- Roberto Bautista Agut defeated Lukas Rosol 6-3, 4-6, 6-2 in the Mercedes Cup final on Sunday for his second career title. Third-seeded Bautista Agut saved five of the six break points he faced and converted three of his six chances to win in 1 hour, 42 minutes. World No. 48 Rosol fired 13 aces to Bautista Aguts two, but the Czech was unable to prevent the 23rd-ranked Spaniard from claiming his second title in as many months. "Since the start of the season, I believed a lot in myself and my work," Bautista Agut told the ATP website. "Ive been playing really well, won a lot of matches and it wwas only a question of time before this happened.ddddddddddddquot; Bautista Agut, who defeated defending champion and top-seeded Fabio Fognini on Saturday, claimed his maiden victory at s-Hertogenbosch last month. Rosol, who knocked out second-seeded Mikhail Youzhny of Russia in his semifinal, was also bidding for his second title after winning at Bucharest last year. "I was looking to find a good rhythm, but the serve was not working at all," Rosol said. "I had to risk a lot with my shots. The level was not as good as the previous rounds and its a pity because I felt really good this week." 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