Watt Sibling Announces Retirement from Professional Sports

Special teams standout ends career with understated grace.

by Nouman Rasool
Watt Sibling Announces Retirement from Professional Sports
© Joe Sargent/Getty Images

In a poignant moment for NFL fans and the Watt family alike, Derek Watt, an accomplished special teamer and fullback, announced his retirement, echoing the steps of his older brother, J.J. Watt, who previously stepped away from the gridiron.

The Watt siblings have long been celebrated for their significant contributions to the league, showcasing a rare blend of talent and brotherhood on the field. Derek Watt shared his decision to retire through a heartfelt social media post on Tuesday, closing the chapter on a career that, while eye-catching statistics may not characterize it, was marked by a relentless work ethic and a notable impact on special teams.

Drafted in the sixth round by the Chargers in the 2016 NFL Draft, Watt's journey through the NFL spanned seven seasons and saw him donning the uniforms of San Diego, Los Angeles, and Pittsburgh.

Derek Watt's Quiet Impact

Though his career stats 71 yards, three touchdowns (two rushing and one receiving), and 178 yards might not capture headlines, Derek's contributions on special teams were invaluable, accumulating 62 tackles and consistently proving himself as a linchpin in the game's often overlooked third phase.

With Derek's retirement, T.J. Watt, a linebacker for the Steelers, remains the lone Watt brother active in the NFL. T.J. continues to dominate defensively, having been named a finalist for the 2023 NFL Defensive Player of the Year award after leading the league with 19 sacks.

His performance shows no signs of waning and highlights the Watt family's ongoing legacy in the sport. Derek's time in the NFL was further enriched by the opportunity to play alongside T.J. for three seasons in Pittsburgh (2020-2022), an experience he cherishes deeply.

In his retirement announcement, Derek paid homage to both of his brothers, crediting them for his success and reflecting on their shared journey from backyard games to the NFL stage. Derek Watt's departure from the league marks the end of an era for the Watt family in football, but his and J.J.'

s legacies will undoubtedly continue to inspire T.J. and many others in the NFL. The Watt brothers' story is a testament to hard work, perseverance, and the indelible bond of family, leaving an indelible mark on the sport they love.