Panthers Out Of The Running For Deshaun Watson

According to Ian Rapoport, the Panthers, and he specifically mentions owner David Tepper, are not expected to pursue a trade for Texans QB Deshaun Watson at this time. 

Panthers helmet

Rapoport mentions that Watson has only waived his no-trade clause for the Dolphins despite some reports he’d be willing to consider other options. 

Carolina was one of the leading teams interested in Watson initially, but backed off after the various civil and legal complaints regarding Watson’s sexual misconduct came to light.

The buzz around the league was that Carolina, spurred by Tepper and his desire for a long-term solution at quarterback, could make a run at Watson before the deadline but this seems to rule that out. 

Joe Person reports Carolina could still pursue Watson in the offseason depending on how his legal situation unfolds. He adds he was told the no-trade waiver wasn’t an issue as it relates to the Panthers. 

The latest reports on Watson indicate Miami and Houston have agreed to the general framework of a deal, but Dolphins owner Stephen Ross won’t sign off until Watson’s legal issues are resolved. 

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell addressed the situation on Tuesday, telling reporters that they still lack information and clarity regarding Watson’s legal situation to make a decision like placing him on the commissioner exempt list.

“We don’t have all the access to that information at this time at this point in time,” Goodell said, per Aaron Wilson. “Obviously, the police have been investigating also. We don’t have all the access to that information at this point in time. We pride ourselves on not interfering in that (legal process) and being as cooperative as we can to make sure we get all of the facts. I think that process is still ongoing.

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. 

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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