Deshaun Watson Fined $5 Million, Suspended 11 Games
The Cleveland Browns QB Deshaun Watson, NFL Players Association, and the NFL have reportedly reached a settlement. USA Today reports the league moved ahead with this resolution while waiting on, former New Jersey Attorney General Peter Harvey, to hand down his decision on the NFL's appeal of Sue L. Robinson on August 3, 2022. The former United States District Judge had originally issued a minimum 6-game ban on August 1, 2022.
Watson was suspended for his actions of sexual misconduct. The former Houston Texans quarterback was accused of sexual assault by more than 60 women who were hired to give him massages between 2019 and early 2021. At least 24 female massage therapists filed suit against Watson and all but 10 lawsuits were settled out of court with confidential agreements by the Texans.
Thursday, August 18, 2022, the league issued an 11-game suspension with no pay, a $5 million dollar fine, and mandatory counseling for his actions of sexual misconduct.
Shortly after the announcement, Deshaun Watson spoke about his suspension. He said that he respects the NFL's decision, but assumed no fault. The Brown QB claims that he is innocent and has never sexually assaulted or directed anyone. During Watson's suspension, the Browns head Coach Kevin Stefanski said the team is going with Jacoby Brissett to begin the 2022 NFL season.