NFL Settlement: Watson Suspended 11 Games for Sexual Misconduct
Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson will be suspended 11 games and fined $5M as part of a settlement announced Thurs. with the National Football League (NFL) over allegations of sexual misconduct.
- Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson will be suspended 11 games and fined $5M as part of a settlement announced Thurs. with the National Football League (NFL) over allegations of sexual misconduct.
- Watson had been suspended for six games by former US District Court Judge Sue Robinson on Aug. 1, however, the league appealed the ruling and sought a longer ban.
- Watson allegedly sought sexual activity from massage therapists while playing for the Houston Texans. According to the lawyer representing the women involved, 23 of 24 civil lawsuits have been settled. He has repeatedly denied the allegations and claims that all sexual activity was consensual.
- Watson, who signed a five-year $230M guaranteed contract with the Browns in March, is one of the highest paid players in the NFL.
- Watson is eligible to practice with the team through Aug. 30, after which he will be barred until Nov. 14. He'll be eligible for reinstatement on Nov. 28 - in time to play the Dec. 4 game against the Houston Texans in Week 13.
- The NFL also announced Watson will have to undergo "a professional evaluation by behavioral experts" and then comply with a suggested treatment program.
Sources: USA Today, CBS, and NFL.
- Narrative A, as provided by The Guardian. This 11-game suspension is far from what Watson deserves and shows that the NFL puts its star players above the safety of women and justice. Roger Goodell said he wanted Watson banned for at least a year, and the NFL commissioner had the power to do it, but instead, he let Watson off the hook with this measly settlement.
- Narrative B, as provided by Fox 43. The NFL's disciplinary process is unfair as it doesn't have the same protections a normal investigation in a court of law does, which creates a presumption of guilt in public discourses. Watson hasn't been proven guilty - in fact, two separate Texas grand juries declined to indict him - and until he is, he shouldn't be punished.