NFL Why Was Deshaun Watson Suspended

Deshuan Watson while playing American football

 

The NFL has had its fair share of controversies over the years, and its most recent one saw overwhelming support against the player accused. The player in question is Deshaun Watson, who is currently being suspended from his next six matches. Safe to say that the NFL odds have gone up in the air. 

For fans of the NFL following the news, it came as a surprise that the Browns QB was getting such light consequences. As for the people who have not been following this story too carefully, they might be wondering why Deshaun Watson is being suspended in the first place. 

The Reason for the Suspension

According to official NFL news, Deshaun’s suspension is the result of him violating the National Football League’s personal conduct policy. The violation in question is the sexual assault allegations that many women have come forward with. 

Sue L. Robinson, a former federal judge, came forward with her ruling after accusations came forward from over two dozen women. According to the official court proceedings, the women in question were massage therapists who were allegedly sexually harassed and/or assaulted by Watson. 

Bettors for various NFL betting lines took this particular news by surprise. 

All of the incidents took place in Texas while Deshaun Watson was still playing with the Houston Texans. The allegations also brought forward various forms of evidence that prove in at least four cases where he harassed the therapists assigned to him. Robinson compiled the verdict and the court proceedings into a 16-page report. 

The report mentions, among many things, Deshaun’s lack of remorse for his actions. It also included proof of harassment from four separate women and the verdict of the proceedings, which was a suspension from six games. 

Robinson found Deshaun Watson guilty of violating three provisions of the personal conduct policy. These include conduct that undermined the NFL’s integrity, endangering the wellbeing and safety of another individual and sexual assault. 

While this is not the first time that an NFL player has been suspended for breaking their personal conduct policy, it is one of the most shocking ones. According to Judge Robinson herself, it was the most egregious case reviewed by the NFL. But despite being one of the worst cases of sexual harassment in the NFL, the punishment was nothing more than a slap on the wrist. 

Following the Official Verdict

Fans of the sport and netizens alike were outraged at the relatively small punishment that the player was receiving. Despite being accused of over two dozen cases of sexual misconduct, and the court allegedly proving four of those cases, the Browns QB was only suspended from six upcoming games without pay. 

The NFL, originally, did not want to appeal the verdict, as one of its spokespeople said as much in an interview. However, following intense backlash online, the NFL back peddled and appealed the verdict. While Deshaun should be getting an indefinite suspension of a year at least, he will be playing in his sixth game if the appeal does not go through. 

As per the collective bargaining agreement, the NFL is appealing the decision and is looking to impose a much stricter penalty on the former Houston Texan. In fact, the Players Union is looking to challenge the ruling in federal court, which could lead to a prolonged legal battle. The NFL is also looking to fine Watson as much as $5 million. 

While Robinson did settle for a smaller suspension, she also did so because of the current policy of the NFL. However, she has also gone on record to say that a longer suspension of one year, similar to what the NFL is appealing for, would be possible if it was part of the personal conduct policy. 

Aftermath and Current Position of Deshaun Watson

While everyone wants Deshaun to get back on the field, especially people looking into NFL point spreads, he is in a state of limbo.

Despite settling 23 of 24 sexual assault allegations against himself and being suspended from six games, Deshaun continues to practice with his team. Although he is currently waiting for his case to resolve, this lack of immediate consequence shined a light on the NFL and its lack of concern for women. 

Not only does this show how the league handles the behavior of off-field players and its support for women, specifically those who had to deal with his sexual assault. 

The team itself is also in an odd state of limbo following the case of their infamous QB. Not only are they unsure of when Watson will step on the field again, but they cannot say for certain if he will even play this season.