The Cleveland Browns traded for quarterback Deshaun Watson knowing that they may not have him for a full season in 2022. After all, Watson could still be suspended by the NFL for multiple games if it find he violated its personal conduct policy.
As you likely know, he was accused of sexual misconduct by more than 20 massage therapists. While a Grand Jury didn’t find enough evidence to take the case to trial, the NFL will come up with its own judgement.
So, it’s easy to see why everyone is thinking Watson will miss some time.
But not so fast, said longtime Brown beat reporter Tony Grossi. Watson may be in the clear, atg least when it comes to being available for all of next season.
“Originally, I thought a suspension was unavoidable,” Grossi wrote in answering fan email. “Now there is a possibility a suspension could be delayed until 2023 until the 22 civil cases against Watson are tried or settled.”
Once it became known that Watson was made available by the Houston Texans, he became the most pursued QB of the offseason. Early reports suggested he told the Browns they were out of the running. Then suddenly, they weren’t.
Again, everyone approached a potential Watson trade as if he would be sidelined by the league for no less than four games, likely more. He’s so good that no one cared.
Now, perhaps, the Browns won’t have to. At least not in Year One with Watson.