NFL, Deshaun Watson settle on 11-game suspension, $5 million fine
|Thursday, August 18, 2022, 11:59 AM- -|
Deshaun Watson will indeed see his first regular-season NFL action since 2020 this season.
Watson and the league agreed to a resolution of an 11-game suspension and a $5 million fine, per multiple reports. He is also said to be entering a treatment program and to be evaluated by behavioral experts.
The 12th game he would be eligible for is a trip to his old team in Houston on Dec. 4.
"I'm grateful that the disciplinary process has ended and extremely appreciative of the tremendous support I have received throughout my short time with the Browns organization," Watson's statement read Thursday. "I apologize once again for any pain this situation has caused. I take accountability for the decisions I made. My focus going forward is on working to become the best version of myself on and off the field and supporting my teammates however possible while I'm away from the team. I'm excited about what the future holds for me in Cleveland."
The NFL was long reported to have been pushing for a full-season suspension. Judge Sue L. Robinson handed down a six-game suspension in the initial third-party arbitration in early August, but the NFL quickly appealed that. Watson then indicated through reports that he was willing to accept an eight-game suspension with a $5 million fine after the appeal.
Watson has settled 23 of the 24 civil lawsuits brought against him last year for sexual assault and misconduct.
He had already missed the 2021 NFL season while seeking a trade from the Houston Texans, and he received that trade this March to the Cleveland Browns, who agreed to pay him $230 million guaranteed over five years.
Watson played in an NFL game for the first time since 2020 last weekend by going 1-for-5 for seven yards in the Browns’ preseason game at Jacksonville.
Deshaun Watson statement: pic.twitter.com/n54aGsYRiy— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 18, 2022
Additionally, Deshaun Watson - who told me Friday he has been undergoing counseling for months - is required to “promptly undergo a professional evaluation by behavioral experts and will follow their treatment program.” #Browns https://t.co/4rbarDvERF— Aditi Kinkhabwala (@AKinkhabwala) August 18, 2022
Now official: pic.twitter.com/No69pLnntz— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 18, 2022
Deshaun Watson's increased 11 game suspension and $5 million fine in addition to contributions from NFL, Browns will establish a fund of $7 million to support nonprofit organizations to promote education, prevention of sexual misconduct, support survivors, related causes: https://t.co/PMaNz7HnNR— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) August 18, 2022