Report: Settlement talks between NFL, NFLPA, and Deshaun Watson “fell apart”

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Last week, we pointed out that a negotiated resolution of Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson‘s discipline was possible, but not likely. The problem was that Watson, as of last week, was determined to clear his name.

With Watson settling 20 of the 24 cases pending against him, that possibly will lay the foundation for a settlement between the league, the union, and Watson.

Josina Anderson of CBS Sports reports that negotiations have indeed occurred. However, talks “fell apart” regarding the extent of the punishment.

Negotiated discipline is not unprecedented. The outcome is announced as the punishment being final, with the player waiving his appeal rights.

Complicating matters for Watson is the fact that there’s no precedent for the new procedure that starts with the NFL proposing a punishment, continues with an independent Disciplinary Officer setting the discipline, if any, and the Commissioner having jurisdiction over any appeal from the player or the team. Unless the Disciplinary Officer decides to impose no discipline at all, Goodell gets the final crack at determining the punishment.

The best outcome for Watson would be to settle everything. Settle the lawsuits. Settle the discipline. Serve the suspension. And then come back, play good football, win games, stay out of trouble, and in time much of this incident will be forgotten. Just like it was for Ben Roethlisberger.

49 responses to “Report: Settlement talks between NFL, NFLPA, and Deshaun Watson “fell apart”

  1. Ben got suspended and had no cases against him, Watson should be banned.

  2. That is not what it says to me.

    ——
    continues with an independent Disciplinary Officer setting the discipline, if any, and the Commissioner having jurisdiction over any appeal from the player or the team.
    ——
    Sounds to me if the Officer sets no discipline or small discipline, and player nor team appeals, Commish has no recourse.

  3. This will never be forgotten. You don’t forget 26 lawsuits and 70+ masseuses. Whether he gets past this and wins or loses games, the stigma will be there and his image will never be the same.

  4. Maybe it will be forgotten like Ben Roethlisberger. But, then again, Big Ben’s name does come up on a regular basis these days so…
    Was quiet for a while though. And certainly not much in stadium noise.

  5. This incident is FAR worse than Big Ben. 24+ women and he settled with 20 — that doesn’t clear his name in the court of public opinion. Watson will be under scrutiny the rest of his career and will always be perceived as a predator.

  6. This is all about public relations as no criminal conduct is proven. Watson will never clear himself from the smear or truth of it cmpletely. Its in the interests of both sides to move on from some agreement. Use the cover of the Snyder hoopla to end this.

  7. Watson will never escape this scandal, and that is of his own doing. Just like all of those women will never forget what he did to them…

  8. 1 game for each case that he agrees to settle minimum. If I were the commissioner It would be a lifetime ban, because it’s pretty obvious there’s a problem that’s unprecedented, and that requires an unprecedented punishment

  9. Goodell and the league certainly does not want to be perceived by the nation as soft on predatory sexual conduct against women. Once the remaining cases have been settled–all of them-we’ll see just how much the NFL wants to maintain its integrity. Yes, this is way, way bigger than Big Ben’s fiasco. I look at Goodell making sure the suspension is for at least one year.

  10. What is crazy about all of this is that Calvin Ridley got suspended one season for betting one parlay ticket and now it looks like Watson is negotiating a settlement for his suspension? Anything less that what Ridley got is an absolute joke. The sheer amount of cases alone should warrant a multi year suspension. The fact that he is settling the cases it’s going to be easier for the NFL to justify the leniency for him. I can tell you what is going to happen right now. The NFL hands down a year “suspension” and he serves 6-8 games and he is playing this year. What a joke.

  11. What’s going to be funny is, you know there’s women waiting for Watson to clear all the cases & the NFL to hand down punishment, only to have these women waiting in the wings pounce for Max leverage on NFL/WATSON.

  12. riggo08 says:

    This incident is FAR worse than Big Ben. 24+ women and he settled with 20 — that doesn’t clear his name in the court of public opinion.
    __________________________________________
    It doesn’t clear his name either. It’s just $$$ makes it look that way.

  13. HagemeisterPark says:
    June 23, 2022 at 1:28 pm
    This is a WAY bigger “incident” than Big Bens

    ———-

    So you think solicitation is a bigger deal than rape?

  14. Josh Morgan says:
    June 23, 2022 at 2:23 pm
    What is crazy about all of this is that Calvin Ridley got suspended one season for betting one parlay ticket and now it looks like Watson is negotiating a settlement for his suspension? Anything less that what Ridley got is an absolute joke. The sheer amount of cases alone should warrant a multi year suspension. The fact that he is settling the cases it’s going to be easier for the NFL to justify the leniency for him. I can tell you what is going to happen right now. The NFL hands down a year “suspension” and he serves 6-8 games and he is playing this year. What a joke.

    ———————

    Apples and oranges. Where criminally what Watson did does not compare for the integrity of the actual game which Ridley did was far worse to. I think Watson should get 2 years after the remaining cases settle but what he did doesn’t effect the outcome of the games or how the product is perceived. Like baseball and other sports the NFL can not looked to have their games rigged.

  15. NFLPA is doing everything possible to minimize the punishment. Do NOT hold the NFL responsible if the suspension is just 1 season, blame the NFLPA.

  16. 2 Grand Juries initiated and 0 called. No criminal charges. Complete he said, she said.

  17. I agree with the general sentiment expressed here. Jackson does deserve a loooong suspension. But Florio’s comparison to the Roethlisberger situation may be spot on. Kobe too, for that matter. Yes, those situations involved only one woman, not the dozens involved here. But, and this is NOT a defense of Jackson, as far as I know he is not alleged to have used force to rape any of his victims. We show undying loyalty to our sports heroes, whether they deserve our adulation or not. If Jackson puts this behind him and successfully returns to the field, few will choose to remember this scandal. That will be a shame.

  18. Okay I hear what everyone else is saying, but what about Robert Karft and Danial Synder?

  19. I think the Ben situation was glossed over, when the details of that night were actually quite disturbing. But now we know that the NFL is willing to look passed certain things for a superstar. Gonna be hard to make us forget this. Ray Rice, Vick, those guys paid a price. And seemed to emerge from it actually changed, Ben never admitted to his stuff. Watson is definitely going to be suspended and unlike Vick, will not have a best season after this. I can see him leaving the league in a couple of years and this going down as the worst decision the browns ever made (which is saying a lot). But time is the only thing that will tell. I hope he learns from his mistakes but he doesn’t seem like he is willing to.

  20. nhpats2011 says:
    June 23, 2022 at 2:37 pm
    HagemeisterPark says:
    June 23, 2022 at 1:28 pm
    This is a WAY bigger “incident” than Big Bens

    ———-

    So you think solicitation is a bigger deal than rape?

    ————

    24 to 26 incidents of sexual misconduct you mean? Possibly, yeah.

  21. The NFL is negotiating with the NFLPA because they have to. They (the NFL) knows that if it goes to court they’re screwed for violating the CBA (discipline of Watson in light of the lack of discipline re Kraft, Snyder, Cowboys)

  22. What else is unprecedented is that this is TWENTY-SIX women accusing him of abuse.

    Has there ever been a case in NFL history where a player had that many accusers of something discipline-worthy? I don’t think so.

    So much of the framing of this seems to be treating it like TWENTY-SIX accusations is the same as one.

    No – they are all separate and individual women who have been wronged by Watson. This should receive 26 times whatever discipline any one of them would. There should be no bulk discount for bad behavior.

  23. How about 1 year for every case he settled? Seems fair to me go ahead and do the right thing Goodell.

  24. youknowwho says:
    June 23, 2022 at 3:02 pm
    2 Grand Juries initiated and 0 called. No criminal charges. Complete he said, she said.

    ————–
    No. Watson was stupid enough to use social media accounts to arrange his massage/sexual predation appointments. And any electronic funds transfers he used to pay masseuses, rent rooms, make travel arrangements, etc. are also part of the record. It’s not just ‘he said/she said’ if you leave an extensive electronic document trail. These sham grand jury proceedings apparently included testimony from a small fraction of the available witnesses and a small portion of the documentary evidence against Watson.

  25. I think the NFLPA is way overstepping their boundaries. They should NOT have a say in it.

  26. If the talks fell apart, the NFL must have wanted more than a year. Watson seems to finally be coming to his senses — he should take the year and shut up — forever.

  27. As it relates to Watson’s discipline, the ONLY thing that matters here is how much political capital Roger, the lack of integrity-commissioner, can gain. If Haslam promises to back Roger no matter what, the punishment will be light. If Haslam decides not to be Roger’s be-atch, the hammer will come down. Don’t be foolish, what is “right” or “wrong” does not matter here, only how it affects Roger matters. He’s the most corrupt commissioner in sports, and that’s a very corrupt bar indeed.

  28. youknowwho says:
    June 23, 2022 at 3:02 pm
    2 Grand Juries initiated and 0 called. No criminal charges. Complete he said, she said.
    —–
    Really more of a he said, she said and she said and she said and she also said and she said and she said too, etc. scenario…

  29. Lifetime ban, with the stipulation that if he proves he completely innocent of ALL charges, he can apply for reinstatement. And just “settling” a case isn’t good enough. All a settlement is, is paying someone to keep their mouth shut, in no way does it prove innocence.

  30. slippery59 says:
    June 23, 2022 at 4:56 pm
    Lifetime ban, with the stipulation that if he proves he completely innocent of ALL charges, he can apply for reinstatement. And just “settling” a case isn’t good enough. All a settlement is, is paying someone to keep their mouth shut, in no way does it prove innocence.

    —————

    Agreed.

    By settling he’s admitted to committing predatory felonies. If this was 1 or 2 women, I may not think that.

    It’s 30+ women and counting. It’s disturbing Goodell authorized the trade.

  31. The man already sat out for a year. Let the man start throwing TD passes already.

  32. You know, I’m starting to think that maybe the Browns are not a very good organization. In a related story, that roaring laughter and those sighs of relief are coming from Houston……

  33. Hodawg, The man sat out a year by his choice. He should get at least a suspension of at least 1 game per civil suit. As it sits now 24 game suspension.

  34. Most NFL fans, regardless of team affiliation (outside of some delusional or desperate Browns fans), would not be surprised or bothered by a multiple year or an”indefinite” suspension.

  35. @hodawg

    Deshaun Watson sat out the 2021 season by his own choice. AND he got paid very handsomely for it.

  36. watchyobehindinharmcity says:
    June 23, 2022 at 1:25 pm
    Ben got suspended and had no cases against him, Watson should be banned.
    **************************************
    You really want to open THAT can o’ worms!?!!

  37. bradygirl12 says:
    June 23, 2022 at 2:11 pm
    Watson will never escape this scandal, and that is of his own doing. Just like all of those women will never forget what he did to them…
    ***************************************************
    Somewhere in the middle is the truth.

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