Deshaun Watson still doesn’t know his status for the 2022 season. And according to a Thursday report by Josina Anderson, Watson, his team, and the union tried – and failed – to hammer out an agreement over punishment with the league. Here’s what Anderson tweeted yesterday.
According to her tweet, the talks “feel apart” and the league is proceeding through the arbitration process, one spearheaded by former US District Judge Sue Robinson.
An agreement between Watson, the union, and the league, would’ve bypassed the entire process. It would’ve eliminated the need for a ruling/recommendation from Robinson, one that is likely to be appealed by whichever side “loses,” be it the NFLPA and Watson or Goodell and the NFL.
An initial punishment is expected to be announced prior to training camp late next month. The NFL reportedly would like to have the entire process, including appeals, resolved by the start of the regular season. The punishment is expected to be severe and Watson is in jeopardy of missing the entire 2022 season. Reportedly, the NFLPA will argue Goodell’s inconsistent punishment when it comes to Watson compared to NFL owners who have faced their own accusations such as Robert Kraft, Dan Snyder, and Jerry Jones.
Watson has been accused by 26 women for sexual harassments or assault during massages. He has denied all allegations. Recently, he settled 20 of the 24 civil suits against him. It’s unclear if he will settle the other four, including the first allegation brought against him.
Cleveland traded for Watson early in the offseason, giving him a fully guaranteed $230 million contract, the largest fully guaranteed deal in NFL history. Now, they’re about to enter the season unsure of the status of two QBs on their roster in Watson and Baker Mayfield, who is likely to be traded in the coming weeks.