NFL & Deshaun Watson Attempted To Negotiate Discipline Settlement

According to Josina Anderson, the NFL in conjunction with the NFLPA and representatives of Browns QB Deshaun Watson recently tried to negotiate a discipline settlement. 

Deshaun Watson

However, Anderson was told the talks “fell apart” because the two sides are not on the same page on the number of games Watson should forfeit. She adds the league disciplinary process is continuing. 

Sports lawyer Michael McCann explains a negotiated settlement between the two sides would be a way to bring closure more quickly, as opposed to the league issuing a decision on a suspension, Watson appealing and then potentially filing a lawsuit like other players in the past have done if they don’t like the results of the appeal. 

Earlier this week, Watson settled 20 of the 24 civil cases against him for varying degrees of sexual misconduct. Four remain unsettled and look like they will be headed to trial at this time. 

Watson still faces potentially significant discipline from the NFL in the form of a suspension, however. NFL spokesperson Brian McCarthy said, “Today’s development has no impact on the collectively bargained disciplinary process.”

Watson was officially cleared of criminal charges by grand juries in two different Texas counties. This opened the door for Watson to be traded and the Browns later reached an agreement to acquire him from the Texans. 

Watson has maintained his innocence throughout.

Like I said, I never assaulted anyone or I never harassed anyone or I never disrespected anyone,” Watson said at Browns minicamp. “I never forced anyone to do anything.”

Watson, 26, was taken in the first round of the 2017 NFL draft out of Clemson by the Texans. He signed a four-year, $13.854 million with the Texans that included a fifth-year option around $17.3 million for the 2021 season.

The Texans signed Watson to a four-year deal worth as much as $177 million heading into the 2020 season, paying him $39 million a year. He was traded to the Browns for draft compensation. 

In 2020, Watson appeared in all 16 games for the Texans and completed 70.2 percent of his passes for 4,823 yards with 33 touchdowns and seven interceptions. He also rushed for 444 yards and three touchdowns.

We’ll have more on Watson as the news is available. 

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