GREEN BAY – It’s been 29 years since Tim Watson heard his name called by the Green Bay Packers. The 1993 sixth-round pick never got to play in the green and gold, but played for three teams (Kansas City Chiefs, New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles) for five years as a only defensive back. And he hasn’t forgotten who kicked him first in the league.
“It was a big achievement for him. So I mean, those are his roots,” Christian Watson, his son, said on Friday night. “So I mean, he’s definitely hanging on to it. And shoot, I mean, I’m sure he’s got a lot of green and yellow around the house to put on when he gets home.
Watson may owe his first dalliance with the green and gold to his brief stint with the Packers, but his son Christian has made it the family color, becoming a dynamic wide receiver with FCS champion North Dakota State Bison. . Then, 29 years after the Packers brought his father to the league, the Packers did the same for Christian, signing the young receiver in the second round, at No. 34 overall.
“It means the world to me,” Watson said, speaking to Green Bay media Friday night. “It’s something I’ve dreamed of since I was little. To be able to play at the highest possible level is the goal I set for myself very early on.”
Watson wanted to find his way in the NFL no matter what. But being able to mirror his father’s path in some way made this whole experience especially memorable.
“Obviously to be able to follow in his footsteps and be drafted by the same club is very special to me,” he said. “I mean, it’s definitely, you know, a surreal experience. Just getting the phone call, getting the call itself brought tears to my eyes, I was so excited And I’m just excited and ready to get to work.
Luckily for Watson, his father and his entire family spent their lives preparing Christian for the job ahead. Long before the NDSU turned this young wide receiver into a second-round draft (he finished No. 4 in NDSU history with an average of 20.38 yards per reception and 26.38 yards per kickback sending off, as well as eighth in school history with 2,140 receiving yards and 10th with 105 receptions), the Watson family had their children in the yard with a football still in hand.
“Throughout my childhood, obviously growing up around a family of footballers, we’re just a family full of competitors. So, I mean, I’ve been competing from such a young age, I love the competition. And I always push myself to be as dominant as possible as a competitor,” Watson said.
“So, I mean, it’s just been a lifelong thing. I mean, football was just something that crossed my mind, and it’s something that I’m very passionate about and have loved for a long time.
As a young player, Watson lined up both in attack and defense. As he evolved, his game evolved and he ended up “wanting the rock” in his hands, as he puts it. It meant finding a way to enter the field as an offensive weapon. It also meant that the backyard also became a classroom. With Tim’s experience as an NFL safety, he put Christian and his siblings to the test.
“He definitely did,” Watson said. “My father, my brother, even kill my mother and my sister, we live to play football.”
Tim may have more NFL experience under his belt than his son, but Christian isn’t so humble he’ll give his pops too much credit. When asked who was the best football player in his family, Watson laughed and replied proudly: “I have to say me. I have to say me.
The Packers are banking on that confidence, that training and that history to move to Lambeau Field this fall.