A significant update in Cleveland Browns’ quarterback Deshaun Watson’s legal situation. According to attorney Tony Buzbee, Watson has settled all but four of the civil lawsuits against him. Buzbee, representing the women suing him, released a statement a short time ago, saying those cases will soon be settled and then dismissed from court.
In part, the statement reads:
“Today I announce that all the cases against Deshaun Watson, with the exception of four, have been settled. We are working through the paperwork related to those settlements. Once we have done so, those particular cases will be dismissed. The terms and amounts of those settlements are confidential. We won’t comment further on the settlements or those cases.”
The statement concluded that the first woman to accuse Watson, Ashely Solis, is one of the four cases that have not been settled. It’s unclear if those cases could be settled in the future or if they will go to civil court.
26 women have accused Watson of sexual harassments or assault during massage sessions. 24 of them had filed lawsuits. A grand jury dismissed criminal charges against Watson, but he was facing a long list of cases in civil court. Settlements here are a sign he’s trying to end his legal liability, which perhaps will help the NFL make a clearer and quicker decision on any potential punishment. Watson is still expected to face a suspension, one that could be an entire year, but there’s no official word on any ruling. One is expected to come prior to training camp with the league hoping any punishment and appeals could be concluded before the start of the season.
The Browns will hope to have Watson for some portion of the season. They made a major traded with Houston to acquire Watson, highlighted by giving him a fully guaranteed, $230 million contract, one that isn’t looking as good right now as it did at the time.