Houston Texans defensive lineman J.J. Watt has impressed during his NFL career with his ability to rush the passer. The Texans' opponent this week, the New York Jets, are also impressed by his ability to rush the puck.
D'Brickashaw Ferguson, an offensive lineman for the Jets who could face Watt a lot Sunday, told ESPN.com in a story published Friday that beyond the All-Pro accolades Watt has received for his play on the field, it's his hockey abilities that stood out.
Ferguson had seen a video posted to YouTube of Watt at a University of Wisconsin summer hockey event. Watt picks up the puck at center ice, skates to just above the hash marks, pulls up and rockets a slap shot into the net as the goalie jumped out of the way.
"I was impressed with his ice skating -- hockey," Ferguson told ESPN.com. "He wasn't actually playing … well, yeah he was. It was a charity event. I remember he did a slap shot. He looked very smooth and it's a cool thing to see guys be multitalented."
Watt grew up in Wisconsin playing hockey from the time he was 3 years old until he was 13 and switched to football full-time. He would go to the Kohl Center to watch Wisconsin play, as well as the Milwaukee Admirals of the American Hockey League.
"I love hockey," Watt told NHL.com in 2013. "Any time it's on TV, I'm always watching. My goal is to one day go to the Winter Olympics to check out some Olympic hockey."