Eighty-one total tackles, 20.5 sacks and 16 batted passes earned Texans defensive end J.J. Watt the NFL’s Defensive Player of the Year award.

According to Watt, he wasn’t playing at full capacity.

During the first week of practices in August, Watt dislocated his left elbow. He missed the majority of the preseason and wore a noticeable black arm brace during all 18 Texans’ games.

“In the beginning, it definitely affected me,” Watt said in an interview with SportsRadio 610. “All the ligaments in there were torn, they were all gone, so they had to have time to recover and regroup. So obviously, I wasn’t at full strength. The brace helped a lot, but it was more of a mental thing,