On Monday, lawyer Tony Buzbee said he has nothing to say about the NFL’s process for imposing discipline on Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson. On Thursday, he’ll have plenty to say, apparently.
Buzbee has called a press conference for 1:00 p.m. CT on Thursday. The stated purpose is “to update the public on the status of the Deshaun Watson and Houston Texans cases and to provide comment regarding the pending NFL proceedings.”
Several plaintiffs will be present, including Ashley Solis, the first of the massage therapists to sue Watson. The notice of the press conference says that the plaintiffs who attend “may share their thoughts.” Apart from the lawsuits filed against Watson, 30 Buzbee clients settled claims against the Texans, after one of them sued.
The plaintiffs and Buzbee will only be able to share so many of their thoughts, given that the settlement agreements signed by Solis and 22 of the other plaintiffs because the settlements (as Buzbee said Monday) are confidential. Typically, confidentiality clauses in settlement agreements sweep broadly to prevent any comment about the situation, allowing the parties to say only, “The matter has been resolved.”
There’s a good chance they’ll be saying more than that on Thursday, Barring an agreed extension of the NFL’s deadline for appealing to the NFL itself the six-game suspension imposed on Watson, we’ll likely know at the time the press conference commences whether an appeal has been filed.
The press conference undoubtedly is intended to pressure the league to impose a longer suspension on Watson.
Buzbee appeared Tuesday on ESPN’s First Take. With the Stephen Ross/Dolphins situation taking over the top spot on the NFL’s news stack, I’ve yet to watch it. It will be my reward for successfully completing my drive to Canton, which starts as soon as I press publish on this article.
As rewards go, I’d rather have some ice cream.