Of course I am right.....
While it is way too early to crown anybody a star over anyone else (we are talking about 22-23 year old kids), Watt is on the path to a Hall of Fame career if he continues to play dominant football and post ridiculous numbers. But, these guys are young, and there is a lot of football to be played. Anyone can flame out at this point.
That point being made.....Here is why Watt is going to be special way beyond the crazy stats he is posting: He is going to revolutionize the way that DL play the game. Watt is leading the league in sacks, but is also leading all front seven defenders in passes defended. He is on pace to have 26 defended passes. In the last handful of years, NFL DL leaders have around 10-12 by the end of the season. In 5 games this season, Watt has eight deflections (three that went for INT's), and this is the part of his game least discussed, but may have the greatest impact. Watt can go hard after the QB, and drop into coverage, but the specialness of his game is eliminating throwing zones for QB's. By keeping his head up, he eliminates a large chunk of the field for the QB to toss the ball into be positioning himself in throwing lanes.
Coaches will be able to say to DL: you are never really out of a play, even if you are not in the QB's face. Let's face it, the vast majority of times, pass rushers are not getting to the QB. If a DL averages only one sack a game, he is a legend, a future HOF. So, the vast majority of times, a rusher is going to fail in their goal of getting to the QB. However, if they can alter where the ball is thrown on plays when they are not in the QB's face, then you have something even more powerful than the occassional sack. Watt has the physical skills (vertical leap, long arms) to take away a portion of a QB's targets on the field. And, you know, coaches are going to try to duplicate what he is doing at the pro, college and high school level.
As for the comparison with Aldon Smith, they play two separate positions on the field, and it is hard to compare. But, realistically, nobody is in Watt's league right now in being as disruptive a player for opposing coaches. That is why he is considered an MVP candidate at the 3-4 position. He is changing the way football will be played in the future. I'm not sure Smith will revolutionize the game the same way as Watt.
As for a posted comment that Watt is getting a lot of one-on-one matchups for sacks, that is not actually true. Of Watt's 8.5 sacks, 7.5 were in 3 or 4 man fronts. He is routinely doubled teamed, and the Texans are attempting to stop this by flipping him back and forth across the LOS.
All of this being said, nobody expected him to be the best defender in the NFL in 2012. I had him fifth on my draft board last year, behind AJ Green, Patrick Peterson, Von Miller, and Marcell Dareus. Not a bad group of rookies from that class. As for Smith, I had him graded as the second best 3-4 OLB after Miller (who I believe will be, and is currently, the superior player over Smith). I graded Smith as a mid-first rounder, and he has exceeded expectations. Good for us.