JJ Watt is one of the most recognizable figures in sports today. The two-time defensive MVP is the face of the Houston Texans and has become one of the NFL’s few golden boys. As is apparent by his social media presence, Watt does not shy away from the spotlight. Any follower of his Twitter page or Instagram account can testify to this. Many have the general impression that star athletes live a dream lifestyle, and JJ Watt is doing his best to prove that theory true.
Dan Le Betard, ESPN personality and host of Dan Le Betard is Highly Questionable, said it best when he tweeted, “JJ Watt so badly wants to appear to be the thing he thinks you want your sports hero to be.” His social media content definitely supports this claim (this is not even including his numerous Papa John’s or Verizon commercials). Watt often posts pictures or videos of his grandmother, volunteering with kids, supportive messages for troops overseas or footage of him working out. It is no wonder Watt is such a popular figure in sports and pop culture–the guy makes it seem like he doesn’t have a single flaw!
In my opinion, displaying perfection is not the point of having athletes on social media. We already realize how awesome their life is. The really interesting thing about on celebrities’ social media accounts is seeing how similar they are to the rest of us and how human they actually are. Of course I love to see JJ Watt, and all celebrities for that matter, using his enormous platform for good, but it does pose an interesting question to his motive behind his behavior.
Please do not be confused by this column. In no way am I saying JJ Watt should stop helping elderly ladies cross the street, stop giving back to his community by helping hundreds of kids or stop supporting our troops. I support Watt and I love all he does and what he represents. In fact, I am from his home state of Wisconsin and have been a huge fan of his since his days as a walk-on for the Badgers. However, I wish he would sometimes work sprinkle some humanizing posts into his social media presence and give us a true look at his life instead of the sparkly-clean image he is constantly trying to portray. No one is actually perfect and Watt is no exception. I just hope he can learn to be just a little self-depreciating before someone else finds a flaw of his and exposes it to the world.