HOUSTON (SPORTSRADIO 610) — </strong J.J. Watt won’t be letting fundraising get in the way of football.
Just days before the Houston Texans regular season opener with the Jacksonville Jaguars, and mere moments after HEB chairman Charles Butt donated $5 million to Watt’s Hurricane Harvey relief fund — bumping the total to nearly $27 million –Watt said he has more than enough energy to take manage both responsibilities.
“It’s a balance,” Watt said. “I’ve had a foundation my whole career. I’ve been doing things like this my whole career. Obviously not on this scale. But when I’m in meetings, when I’m in practice, when I’m in the weight room, that’s where 100 percent of my focus is. … As soon as meetings end, soon as the practice is over, I’m back to making sure that I do everything I can for this relief fund to help these people, because that’s what’s important.”
Watt, whose YouCaring.com page beat its initial goal of $200,000 within two hours, has received a number of high profile donations, including Jimmy Fallon, who gave $1 million last night on “The Tonight Show,” Ellen Degeneres and Arnold Schwarzenegger.
He’s also making his return to the field on Sunday after a lost season, and three back surgeries in nine months.
How does he juggle both?
“Airplane mode,” he quipped.
Just weeks after the worst weather event in Texas state history, with damage estimated in the range of $110 billion, Watt knows how big their first game at NRG Stadium will be for residents here.
He hopes to make it special for them.
“I’ve said the whole time, This is so much bigger than a game,” Watt said. “But I also realize that that game can help lift people’s spirits. So I’m very committed to both things, and I know that I can divide my time up evenly.”