The Texans star defender has been injured since late October

Watt set to return from injured reserve

Bobby Ellis/Getty Images

He's backkkkkkkkkkk!

Designated for return

This was the first step in J.J. Watt returning to the Texans. They activated his 21-day window where he can practice which allows him to work with the team but not take up a roster spot. They can move him to the active roster at anytime.

The injury's impact

Watt tore his pectoral on the above play. It was reportedly torn off the bone and the recovery time is set to be at least three months. He will be making his return to practice roughly eight weeks after his surgery. Which, to say, is crazy.

Whitney Mercilus had a similar injury a couple of seasons ago and if the Texans had been competitive at the end of 2017 he could have returned. Mercilus though injured his pectoral about a month before Watt, making the timeline for recovery more regular.

Watt could be as close to 80 percent according to ProFootballDoc on Twitter.

Time frame for on the field

At best, Watt is playing against the five seed when the Texans host a game for wild card weekend. That is my thought. If truly healthy, a few snaps against Tennessee wouldn't be terrible but I would guess with a chance of re-injury, Watt would save that risk and any performance he has for the playoff game.

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Framber Valdez was dominant on Thursday. Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images.

The Astros came into this game against the Rangers looking to take the finale of the 3-game series, and they did exactly that.

Framber Valdez had another classic performance, pitching seven innings while allowing zero runs and four hits. Valdez also recorded 8Ks and 1BB.

On offense, it was a big day for Yuli Gurriel who bounced back with 3 hits after going 0-5 the previous night. Alex Bregman and Martin Maldonado both went yard, hitting 2 and 3-run bombs respectively.

Maldonado's came in the bottom of the second inning, giving the Astros a 3-0 lead.

Bregman's put the Astros on top 5-0 in the bottom of the 5th.

The Astros added two more runs in the 7th after Bregman singled to drive in a run, and a sac fly from Aledmys Diaz.

Heading into the 8th inning, Seth Martinez took over for Valdez protecting a 7-0 lead. That lead wouldn't last long after Martinez allowed a couple of base runners and gave up 2 runs off a pair of singles from Nathaniel Lowe and Leody Taveras.

The Astros headed to the bottom of the 8th up 7-2.

After a scoreless bottom of the 8th, Rafael Montero came in to close the game out in the 9th.

Montero gave up a solo homer to Marcus Semien with 2 outs in the 9th before shutting the door.

Final: Astros 7, Rangers 3

Next up: Oakland comes to Minute Maid to play the Astros Friday night at 7:10PM.



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