NFL Redditors react to potential Deshaun Watson suspension
Deshaun Watson’s legal troubles continue to mount. The former Houston Texans quarterback was put on the NFL Commissioner’s Exempt List due to alleged sexual assault. 26 cases have been brought against Watson, each by different women (most represented by famous Houston lawyer Tony Buzbee).
With Watson, the Cleveland Browns, and the Texans caught in this tangled web, Roger Goodell and the league are facing mounting pressure to discipline the involved parties swiftly and harshly.
There have been rumors of a year-long ban or worse for Watson. NFL fans are reacting to the possibility of a suspension, as first reported by The Wall Street Journal and mentioned by Mary Kay Cabot via Twitter:
“[NFL] informed Deshaun Watson, NFLPA, & disciplinary officer Sue L. Robinson it was recommending an indefinite suspension for at least the season, sources say. Hearing begins Tues. [WSJ] first to report the indefinite min/yr. ban”
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While the term indefinite does imply that the suspension could go on forever, one Redditor believes there should be a definite, permanent ban for Watson.
One response said they’d support the NFL financially if the league went ahead with the suspension.
A Raiders fan noted that other football leagues might quickly get Watson involved if he were to be banned from playing in the NFL again.
A Cowboys fan did not seem confident that the league would serve Watson the appropriate punishment.
A Bengals fan believes the NFL will lobby for an indefinite suspension of the Browns quarterback without any intention of keeping him out forever.
One fan pointed out that if the NFL suspends the quarterback, it would mean the league believes he committed a crime. That would likely mean that harsh punishment is warranted.
Another fan stated that the league almost has to do something, or this issue will only worsen in the future.
A Steelers fan noted that Watson is set up just fine financially since the Browns gave him a fully guaranteed extension after trading for him.
A Buccaneers fan believes that a one-year suspension won’t be enough.
A Seahawks fan also doesn’t see the accusations ending any time soon. The number recently jumped to 26, so more allegations could still come.
One thing is clear: The end of the troubles for everyone involved is not near.
What will the Browns do if the NFL suspends Deshaun Watson?
The Browns may find themselves in a tight situation if the league officially suspends Watson for a year or longer. They’re in contention for a deep playoff run, so now is not a great time to lose a quarterback.
However, the Browns do still have Baker Mayfield on the roster. The jilted quarterback has stated his wish to leave the team and play elsewhere, but the Browns have yet to grant his request.
This could be strategic, as the team might be waiting for the league’s decision before pulling any strings. If Watson is suspended, they would at least have Mayfield to fall back on.
However, that would be a long shot. Mayfield wants to leave the team, though he recently indicated that it’s not impossible for him to play in Cleveland again. According to Carey Murdock, an Oklahoma-based reporter:
“I asked Baker Mayfield if there was any chance for a reconciliation with the Browns if they were without their quarterback this season. He said the Browns would have to reach out to start that process. Mayfield said he has moved on.”
Whatever happens with Watson, the Browns have a tough road ahead.