For once, J.J. Watt did not completely dominate a Houston Texans’ victory. In fact, veteran cornerback Johnathan Joseph’s work against the Tampa Bay Bucs’ towering wideouts — Mike Evans and Vincent Jackson — keyed a 19-9 Week 3 win, the Texans’ first W since they became national darlings on HBO’s Hard Knocks show.
“J-Jo was huge,” safety Quintin Demps says.
But J.J. Watt still got the girl. Make that the celebrity dream girl.
Tiffani Thiessen of Saved by the Bell and 90210 fame joined Danielle Fisher (aka Topanga of Boy Meets World), mega actress Jennifer Aniston and tennis star Caroline Wozniacki in the Watt “romance” pantheon after Sunday’s game. This is a list that’s mostly confined to online flirting — a category that Thiessen, a happily married mother of two certainly falls into.
Not that this seemingly removes any of the thrill for Houston’s biggest star.
Watt’s moment with Thiessen started when he noticed Mario Lopez, another former Saved by the Bell star, on the Texans sideline during warmups. This came after Watt threw a ball so high up into the stands that a police officer felt compelled to wave off the fan who got the ball’s attempt to fling it back in fear that another unsuspecting spectator would be bonked in the back of the head by a wayward pass (ordinary folks cannot fling footballs as far as Watt). Watt wrapped the rather diminutive-looking Lopez (let’s just say, Tom Cruise wouldn’t need platform shoes to co-star with him) up in a bear hug and pictures were snapped.
After the game — in which Watt and last year’s No. 1 draft pick Jadeveon Clowney did provide flashes of the frightening pass rush combo they can become — the Texans star savvily tweeted out one of the pics with the hashtag, #WhereIsKellyKapowski. Of course, that’s the cheerleader character Thiessen played on Saved by the Bell.
This prompted Thiessen to tweet back a picture of herself holding up the Men’s Health cover with a shirtless J.J. Watt on it — the same cover that had Houston Mayor Annise Parker swooning. “I heard you were looking for me. I’m in LA catching up on my reading. Btw, good game today.…” Thiessen tweeted at Watt.
Hey. when J.J. Watt reaches out, you answer. Married or not.
It’s all harmless celebrity fun. and Watt seems to enjoy it with the same giddy glee that any regular guy who had one of his teenage TV crushes respond to him would. Even if Watt’s exchange is sure to end up on Entertainment Tonight and Extra.
Winning makes it easier to do these type of things, of course. With the 1-2 Texans tied for both first and last place in the AFC South, there are plenty of questions about how long the winning can last in Houston. Watt’s decoy cameo at tight end in the closing minutes speaks to the possible fun ahead for Bill O’Brien’s Texans team. Clowney’s burst — and his annoyance at going sackless despite all the quarterback pressures — speaks to the defense’s more important true potential though.
“You don’t just want to make pressures, you want to make plays,” Clowney says. “I always pride myself on making the play, so I went to the sideline mad and my teammates are telling me, ‘Good job.’ ”
Clowney shakes his head, seemingly a little disgusted by the no-sack praise. “I have to make those plays.”
J.J. Watt already knows to how to make all the plays, on and off the field. Just ask his latest dream girl.