NFL has three days to appeal Deshaun Watson decision (but the deadline can be extended)

USA TODAY Sports

As it stands, the NFL’s deadline for appealing the six-game suspension imposed on Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson arrives on Thursday. That’s the same day the NFL will stage its first contest of the season, the Hall of Fame game. In Canton. Just down the road from Cleveland.

That’s hardly ideal for the league, if it wants the full benefit of three business days to consider the next move. The relevant provision of the Collective Bargaining Agreement allows the parties to extend the deadline by mutual agreement of the league and the union.

And the league may want time to make its decision. Time to see how people are reacting to the six-game suspension. Time to see whether there’s an outcry that compels the Commissioner — who was under siege in 2014 for being too lenient with Ray Rice — to intervene and increase the suspension.

“The appeal shall be limited to arguments why, based on the evidentiary record below, the amount of discipline, if any, should be modified,” the CBA provides. “The Commissioner or his designee will issue a written decision that will constitute full, final and complete disposition of the dispute and will be binding upon the player(s), Club(s) and the parties to this Agreement.”

In other words, there will be no new evidence, if there’s an appeal. No new proof. No facts that weren’t previously introduced. Judge Robinson’s factual findings will control.

But her factual findings, whatever they specifically were, caused her to impose a six-game suspension. In other words, she decided that he did enough to get suspended for more than a third of the season. Thus, there are sufficient facts on which the Commissioner can base a decision to suspend Watson longer than that, if the Commissioner so chooses.

Before it gets to that point, the league must decide whether to appeal. It has three business days, unless the NFL and the NFLPA agree to bump the issue beyond Hall of Fame weekend.

25 responses to “NFL has three days to appeal Deshaun Watson decision (but the deadline can be extended)

  1. The crying accuser who said she would never take the money just destroyed any chance of the appeal. When she took the money it was game over. Now it just looks like a money grab and they have no case after her testimony is thrown out.

  2. How about the fact that a player gets a one year suspension for gambling a trivial amount on the NFL when he wasn’t even playing? What a terrible look when this perv gets only six.

  3. The best look for the league would be an appeal by lunch hour. And and a a suspension for the whole year announced tomorrow or Weds.

  4. NFL had better appeal, otherwise players will try to get away with whatever they want. What’s worse is that the NFL takes 100% of the PR damage, while the poor misguided player is portrayed as the victim.

  5. Not going to happen. Everyone can live with six (6) games so everyone will breath a sigh of relief and get back to football.

  6. So what will Goodell and the NFL do. I am a betting they remain quiet and wait for it to go away.

  7. If they overturn the judge’s decision they should scrap this entire process and go back to Goodell as judge and jury. The whole process would look like a total fassaud…

  8. Who among us would substitute their judgment for that of a female federal judge who has seen all the evidence and heard all the witness testimony we have not?

  9. Just leave it alone. We’re on the verge of starting the season, the NFL went outside its inner circle for discipline for the first time and thelat discipline has been handed down. It’s time to move on. Let. It. Go.

  10. It’s a travesty…Brady gets 4 games for adjusting the air in footballs which EVERY quarterback was doing at the time, and Watson gets only 6 games for allegedly being sexually inappropriate with who knows how many women. What?? They better appeal, but they won’t, because they just want this to go away. It’s like the Ray Lewis incident nobody wants any part of it

  11. Hopefully, the league was prepared for all scenarios regarding the punishment, and files the appeal asap. 6 games is not nearly enough for what he did.

  12. One year minimum with pay and the Browns should feel some pain in this fiasco of their own making.

  13. Watson has paid a lot so far, money, public image. Robinson should have added mandatory behavior therapy for Watson. 6 games is ok because there was no violence.

  14. don’t you think Watson settling 3 more cases on the eve of Judge Robinson’s decision signals that there is negotiating going on behind the scenes between the league, the Judge, and the NFLPA to come to a brokered solution that stops the sideshow once and for all so we can move on to football?

  15. Once again the Watson executioners are on here screaming for more justice calling him all types of names and implying they know what he did. People, you don’t know cr*p. Whatever evidence the NFL had and presented to Ms. Robinson was good enough in her opinion for 6 games, but not good enough to warrant a year or indefinate suspension. She read the evidence (allegedly over a 1,000 pages), heard testimony and read post hearing briefs concluding all of that warranted 6 games. For those screaming this was an injustice and he deserves more, I hope your not throwing any rocks out of anger in thoses glass houses you live in. Facts are facts and you have none. You are basing everything on allegations and the facts you weres snookered in the court of public opinion.

  16. Doubt the league appeals as it only keeps it in thr news. Let the outrage have its time the next few days and then it will be onto the next big story. Won’t be long and this will be mostly forgotten.

  17. At this point does it even matter? The league has had so many crazy up and down rulings that do not have any rhyme or reason behind them, that they have zero credibility left. Even thought Watson seems scummy, it really doesn’t matter what he gets. The league will plow forward, handing out willy-nilly suspensions that don’t match the crime and don’t align with similar incidents.

  18. 6 games is nowhere close to enough. The NFL needs to do more to protect women and it is obvious that Watson was wrong in how he interacted with women to satisfy his kink.

  19. If Watson is suspended for a year/indefinitely, then there are several owners who should definitely have to answer some hard questions publicly and answer for their transgressions.

    And a player doing what Watson did is that bad. But the owners should be held to an even higher standard, considering the amount of public money funds their stadiums and their “takes” on modern culture and their proudly conservative bent.

    Jones, Snyder, Kraft, Davis just to start.

  20. What a ludicrous process. The NFL presented their case (only 4 out of 24 plaintiffs), and the judge imposed a 6 game suspension. If the NFL was so adamant about getting a lengthy suspension, maybe they should have done a better job presenting their case to the judge. So now Roger can go back on her ruling based on the court of public opinion. If the same held true for the Owners, then Daniel Snyder would be banned for life. What a crock of sh*t.

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