September 12, 2010

Watt continues block party in win

If he's on the field, it's a pretty safe bet to expect defensive end J.J. Watt to be wherever the football is.

Between sacks, tackles for loss, forced fumbles and pass break ups, he contributes in as many ways as anyone in a Badgers uniform.

He didn't break up any passes this week, but that didn't stop Watt from getting his hands on the ball.

As San Jose State lined up on 4th-and-6 late in the second quarter, Watt got his hands on kicker Harrison Waid's field goal attempt, sending it offline.

"It seems to be a trend and I'm kind of happy with the trend," Watt said. "A couple blocked passes last week and then a blocked field goal this week, I'll take it."

Coming as no surprise to anyone who knows him, Watt is not satisfied with just his role as defensive end. As evidenced by the field goal block, he is a fixture in the Badgers' special teams units.

Additionally, Watt was featured at tight end twice Saturday on UW red zone drives. He did not play a major role in the outcome of the plays, but his mere presence shows his willingness to do whatever is needed to help his team win.

"J.J. is an unbelievable competitor," head coach Bret Bielema said. "Now he thinks he's a specialist too because he gets to go in on offense.

"I was always concerned that J.J. wasn't going to be around when we called for that personnel, and he's practically in the huddle before it's even said. That's how much he's enjoying it."

As a former tight end, Watt certainly knows his way around the offensive line and, more importantly, the football.

With that in mind, it's easy to wonder if offensive coordinator Paul Chryst might call Watt's number at some point this season when he's on the field. If Chryst were so inclined, Watt would certainly provide quarterback Scott Tolzien with another big, sure-handed target to throw to near the goal line.

True to form, however, Watt is satisfied with simply blocking and drawing the attention of the defense.

"If I score a touchdown, I'd be pretty happy with that," Watt said. "Right now, I'm just doing anything I can to help the team."

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