Initial public reaction to Deshaun Watson suspension is not positive


In recent weeks, as news surfaced regarding the evidence that was, and wasn’t, introduced in the three-day Deshaun Watson hearing, a sense emerged that Judge Sue L. Robinson wouldn’t come close to suspending Watson for a full year. However, most football fans may not have been paying attention during one of the slowest periods of the year for the NFL.

Most football fans won’t realize that, despite 24 civil cases (23 have settled), the league introduced evidence as to four accusers before Judge Robinson, not 24. Most fans have witnessed the manner in which attorney Tony Buzbee has worked the court of public opinion for more than 16 months. Many fans have decided that Watson deserves a suspension longer than six games.

We’ve posted this question on Twitter. Do you agree with Deshaun Watson being suspended six games? With nearly 20,000 ballots cast in little more than an hour, 77.6 percent say no.

Voting remains open until tomorrow morning. Usually, the numbers don’t change all that much from the first hour.

While there’s a chance that some disagree because they think six games is too much, the pro-Watson crowd generally regards six games as good next.

Public reaction will be a factor in the NFL’s final decision as to whether an appeal should be filed to the Commissioner, and in the Commissioner’s decision on appeal. The league can’t afford to be perceived being as too lenient with players who commit misconduct against women. That lesson was learned via the disaster of the Ray Rice case.

Judge Robinson already has determined that Watson engaged in misconduct. If the voices objecting to a six-game suspension become loud enough, the league will have no choice but to exercise its prerogative to increase it.

89 responses to “Initial public reaction to Deshaun Watson suspension is not positive

  1. Let me guess – fans of the Steelers, Bengals and Browns all think the suspension should be waaaaay longer and they all voted 14 times.

  2. I think he deserves a year long ban. Watson made the league look bad, and Cleveland made the league look weak, but this 6 game suspension makes the league look powerless. Today, Watson is smiling, he’s gotten away with it and been paid unprecedentedly in the process. The NFL needs to show the fans they have some semblance of authority left

  3. This works in Goodell’s favor. He can bump it up to 8 or 10 games and talk about how seriously the league takes issues like this.

  4. Calvin Ridley gets a1 year for “gambling”, but this serial predator gets 6 games? The NFL is a joke.

  5. First rule of thumb – don’t rely on Twitter to gauge public opinion – or to get any type of useful information for that matter.

  6. Minimum of one year suspension is the only acceptable punishment for what has transpired. One does not “settle” unless there is something there to silence. If he were so secure that he did nothing wrong, he should go to court. And he should be paid for that so that the Browns feel some financial pain in their stupidity.

  7. The poll question is too vague. People voting no could be ones who think he shouldn’t have been suspended at all.

  8. This will not help Deshaun’s popularity outside of Cleveland. At least with a year suspension, some people would have thought that Deshaun paid the price for his actions. 6 games seems like he got away with something and people don’t like that.

  9. The six-game suspension will cost Deshaun Watson $333,333 in salary, and that will hurt especially when your Contract is $230.000.000 Guarantee , While Calvin Ridley got a SEASON LONG Suspension for placing $100 wagers on NFL games total bets of 1500 that did NOT include the Falcons. In the bets for those games, Ridley won and profited $654. $654 he profited while his contract was 4 year $10,900,711. Average yearly salary $2.7 Million.

  10. if the league really wanted a longer suspension, they would have presented information from more than 4 of the plaintiffs, along with newspaper accounts of a fifth. they and the prosecutors in texas cooked this case and here are the results. money talks and everything else (including the 66 massage therapists) walks.

  11. I think that the owners should face greater punishment Jones, Haslem, Kraft and Snyder. oh I forgot the league turns a blind eye to what the owners do what Watson did was wrong but what the owners did was equally as bad.

  12. Seems like this was the likely result when the league decided to present only 5 cases to Sue. And 1 wasn’t even part of the lawsuit.

  13. Seeing that half of the world is female, and there are some males who realize football is just a game … I could see this being the case. Any regular person does what he did … they’re fired and probably in jail.

  14. Slippery slope when fans and media take the position their judgment is better than that of a female federal Judge who saw the evidence and heard the witness testimony.

  15. Asking fans who have had no access to the actual information presented to the judge to now “vote” on the judge’s decision is ridiculous.

  16. I think where there’s smoke there’s fire. There’s also an old saying that you can get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich. Well, a grand jury twice refused to indict Watson. So, thinking Watson was going to get much more than a slap on the wrist from the retired judge was/is wishful thinking

  17. This will be yet another black eye for the NFL if the suspension remains at 6 games.

  18. Looks like the compromise unable to get done was done with this six game suspension.
    Why should anyone be positive about the suspension?
    Other players were suspended by the NFL when their suspension also didn’t make sense .
    I’m sure other teams wanted the Browns minus Deshaun Watson for as long as possible this season..,.

  19. A respected, neutral, judge heard both sides and made a decision. The fact that neither side “likes” her decision means she probably made the right one. People need to quit the false outrage over issues that truly do not impact their lives.

  20. Most fans do indeed know nothing. Then they go to Twitter…..and think they learn more. America! A crumbling nation of hypocracy

  21. Lets be real here.The suspension is too short.But it is a negotiated part of the CBA and needs to be followed.The real question is…when will owners start getting suspended?Due process was follwed in Watson’s case according to the new CBA but yet owner’s get away with nothing and no legal parameters in place to ensure they do.

  22. carloswlassiter says:
    August 1, 2022 at 10:11 am
    Let me guess – fans of the Steelers, Bengals and Browns all think the suspension should be waaaaay longer and they all voted 14 times.


    I’m a Steelers fan. Whether they give him one game or 1 year, doesn’t put any less or more food on my table.

  23. Disgraceful! As for the “respected, neutral judge” comment above…she heard evidence on FOUR case, not all of them. This is an absolute joke. I fear for any woman this dude comes into contact with in the future. Predators don’t change their stripes. Shame on you NFL!!

  24. Should have been a much longer suspension but this is the NFL we’re talking about, which allows all sorts of criminals and rule breakers to get away with almost anything. It is what it is and as long as the product on the field continues to entertain, people will continue to watch.

  25. As a woman, I am appalled. As an NFL fan, I am appalled. As a former Browns fan, I am appalled. Rooting for any team playing the Browns. Hope they go 0 and 17.

  26. The bad guys always win in America. Just don’t smoke weed or gamble, you might have to serve an actual suspension for some reason.

  27. 24+ cases with evidence involving actual women – 6 games
    Deflategate conspiracy with no hard proof relating to game – 4 games

    What an insult !! Not even comparable !!!

  28. I think it should have been a 9 game suspension. Just so it crossed the 1/2 season mark.

  29. Of course the opinion is not positive. This guy did something wrong and it sucks to see someone walk away because it’s all about money for the league. I hope karma follows this guy to the field over time.

  30. It should be a year long suspension, but the league will likely be happy with the judgement that Robinson made. Deshaun took the easy way out by settling with most of the victims already so there really cannot be anything criminal related that is going to derail him. The judge took all that into account and said 6 games. I don’t like it but at least he gets something.

  31. And Kareem Hunt got 10 games for kicking an under 21 aggressive drunk girl who took the first swing. Not sayin’ that was right but wow!

  32. You knew there waa collusion towards a slap on the wrist when the NFL allowed the Browns to pay out settlements to the claimants.

  33. whata joke, and the argument that he sat out last year is an even bigger joke, he got paid and would have done that anyway to force a trade, so 6 games is ridiculous! no women should watch the nfl or buy another jersey for their husband or kids, hit them where it hurts. good ole roger better bump it up cause baseball is sitting there laughing, just like deshaun

  34. NFL suspensions:
    Calvin Ridley: 17 games, betting
    Vontaze Burfict: 12 games, targeting
    DeAndre Hopkins: 6 games, PED
    Martavis Bryant: Indefinitely, Weed
    Josh Gordon: 25+ games, Weed
    Darren Waller: 16 games, substance abuse
    Ray Lewis, 0 games, $250,000 fine, murder/obstruction of justice
    DeShaun Watson: 6 games, 25 SV accusations

  35. The league/owners does not care how it looks as long as the $$ keep rolling in. The only way to show the league people are not happy with them is to boycott their product. But we all know that is not happening.

  36. njeffrey says:
    August 1, 2022 at 10:21 am
    Seeing that half of the world is female, and there are some males who realize football is just a game … I could see this being the case. Any regular person does what he did … they’re fired and probably in jail.

    “Regular” people who did what he did (what exactly is that by the way??? and don’t regurgitate the allegations cause their not proof of anything. They’re just allegations). People rarely lose their jobs over personal condcuct that occured outside their employment. So spare me the “regular” person gets fired argument. Also, odds are if he were a “regular” person there would not have been 24 civil suits.

  37. I should be a reporter I was the only one to correctly point out the Max she could levy was 6 games.

  38. 23 games when you factor in last year exempt list. Didnt Stallworth get just a year for killing someone while driving right?

  39. Simplest way to put it. If even one person was telling the truth about Watson’s behavior, is a 6 game suspension sufficient? Obviously the judge thought at least 1 person was telling the truth to give any suspension at all, so to me it’s obvious that the punishment is too light.

  40. bradygirl12 says:
    August 1, 2022 at 10:24 am
    This will be yet another black eye for the NFL if the suspension remains at 6 games.
    Unfortunately the NFL doesn’t worry about its black eyes. They heal extremely quickly, and nobody even seems to think they are unsightly while they are there.
    We, the fans, have proven that the NFL is far more important to us than morality. It is pitiful.

  41. He deserved more, but at least the guy will be punished. He reveled in the positive attention and adoration — that’s gone. He’ll forever be known as a deviant. That will have to be enough.

  42. Not sure why you are still stirring the pot & generating mistrust. An independent woman judge has issued a ruling & if people still have issues with that, then they really need to evaluate their personal judgement. Other than media driven rhetoric, what do people know to come to conclusions.

    I am confused as to why the NFL will object to this, unless we want NFL to now ignore proper process and hand out their own will. Then, why even have a process in the first place.

  43. It’s all about the shield and integrity right nfl 👌🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

  44. This is one reason why players have wanted a neutral third party to decide on potential penalties for off the field issues to take the emotion out of things. This person has worked in the legal system and isn’t prone to making emotional decisions impacted by public opinion like Roger G. and others in the media would like. This has always been what should have occurred. Also comparing this Watson case to past ones isn’t an apples to apples comparisons since all the past cases were ruled by Roger G (and his predecessors).

    On the Calvin Ridley thing. What Ridley did potentially impacts the integrity of the game which is a huge deal for the actual product the NFL is selling. Anytime a player is involved in illegal gambling, PED, or things that have the potential to impact actual games that will warrant a tougher suspension. Watson’s behavior as well as others who get into off the field issues are bad, but in reality they aren’t related to the game being played or impacting the integrity of the game.

  45. Most of these comments ignore reality. The NFL presented its case, and Watson presented his case. After hearing both sides, a judge decided 6 games. The 6 games wasn’t an NFL decision. It was an independent judge’s decision.

  46. You know Goodell and the criminals he represents are going to challenge this ruling

  47. Most people would view a 6 game suspension less offensive if it actually cost Watson 10 million too. I’d like to know how much the 29 settlements cost him. If its in the neighborhood of 10 mil plus they up the suspension to 8 games only then would i think he’s paid his dues.

  48. The Death Knell of the NFL is getting louder and louder with these totally misguided punishments meted out and the shortsighted “marriage” between the greedy, money grabbing owners and Organized Gambling. Upholding the integrity of the game will be seriously challenged when the first player is guilty of shaving points and/or fixing games and I believe that day is rapidly approaching. Good-bye NFL, RIP.

  49. Are we really surprised? That judge sat on her decision to buy time for Watson’s lawyers to settle the rest of the cases to offset the backlash. They almost succeeded as only one hasn’t settled. They knew this was coming and the nflpa said as much when they out out the potential lawsuit if it was more than 8 games if Goodell meddled. Let’s see if the 50 million dollar gutless wonder has any integrity left to up the suspension.

  50. Suspension is good and all… But, I’ll still tune in to see opposing defenses grind him into a fine paste. Should be most enjoyable. That’s public sentiment, for ya.

  51. It`s getting hard to watch the NFL and not feel like i`m part of the problem. It`s time to switch my weekend schedule and get my work done on Sunday`s and watch more college football on Saturday`s.

  52. Good news for the players…they can get their freak on, and as long as it’s just a few women, they might miss a half or maybe a game if judge is in a cranky mood that day.

  53. well, at least he wasn’t gambling. I mean in the world of crime, gambling is much worse than being a serial sex offender. am I right or what?

  54. How can I ever root for this guy? He didn’t “clear his name”, he bought people’s silence.

  55. We have a court to avoid mob mentality. The NFL should not feel pressured to give into mob mentality now. In fact, they should defer “justice” to the courts and stop this foolishness.

  56. I know it is hard not to be emotional about these things. Goodell suspended Tom Brady for 4 games with zero proof of any wrongdoing. Zero. Despite spending millions of dollars and paying for a biased report, they still had zero proof of anything other than cold weather deflating footballs. Watson has settled 23 civil cases of improper conduct. Not 1, not 2, not 3… 23. The NFL’s personal player conduct policy provides incredible latitude for punishment, which Goodell has used inconsistently for years now. But 6 games? Is the NFL that tone deaf? Do they really need to see the specific videos a la Ray Rice to do the right thing? They finally had the chance to step up and make a statement and yet again failed. There is just a colossal lack of leadership and I do think this one in particular is going to hurt a lot more than the NFL realizes from a PR perspective.

  57. Perhaps the female judge in question weighed all of the evidence and determined there isn’t a whole lot to see here.

  58. So let me get this straight Big Ben gets 6 games for 1 incident which by the way no settlement was paid and the AG in Georgia said there were no grounds for charges yet this guy gets the same punishment for 30 incidences and could have been charged with crimes but for some reason the grand jury did not choose to indict but the lead detective said there are grounds to prosecute. One year would have been in adequate. The “SHIELD” is shattered not just broken!

  59. So the Bengals and Ravens get Watson twice while the Steelers get an early week off, wonderful

  60. Judge Robinson had absolutely no experience in this type of case. She was chosen because the NFLPA determined she was a favorable ‘juror’. Robinson must have concluded that (many?) of those women were a conspiracy to ‘shake down’ Watson when he was merely requesting ‘favors’ – not coercing or demanding them. The media has whipped this case into a frenzy, and now the NFL is forced to match the public perception of guilt to the proper discipline. A one year suspension ( 17 games plus postseason) should do the job.

  61. When are we going to realize that the Twitter soldiers are totally powerless. They’ll tweet for a few days and move on to the next faux outrage. We need to start ignoring every one of them!

    Plus…he’ll have essentially been suspended for a year and a half. I get it. He was paid last year but still. He’s been off the field since 2020.

  62. Those Clowns fans in here who believe only other AFC North fans have a problem with this softball decision, are seriously delusional. If I am a female fan for ANY NFL team, I am shocked at this as a slap on the wrist.

  63. Come on Rog! Let Deshaun investigate himself, never allow the report to go public, fine him, don’t suspend him a game, and then sweep it under the rug! It’s the Dan Snyder method.

  64. The structure of your “poll” is such that you are collecting both the people who think the suspension is too long AS WELL AS the people who think the suspension is too short. The 77% disagreement is collecting opinions from both sides.

  65. Watson is a terrible person, and he shouldn’t play ever again. The elites always come out on top, our society only cares about convenient justice.

  66. His name is mud.
    Reputation ruined.
    No amount of hardware is going to cover that up.

  67. The judge stated that she had to go by precedent and what is spelled out in the CBA. She cited the Jameis Winston Uber case where he groped a driver and got 3 games. Using that precedent, she felt that 6 games was appropriate.

    To me, this makes zero sense. Winston’s 3 games were for a single incident. The NFL only presented 5 cases, and one was thrown out. But the judge stated that Watson is a predator and violated NFL personal conduct policies.

    Based on all of this, 6 games makes no sense and the decision defies logic.

  68. Anybody else does this stuff. They are called a rapist and sex offender. If you are a celebrity and have money, then its sexual misconduct. And people wonder why this country is messed up. Dude should be prison shower room lunch meat right now

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.