NFL disciplinary officer Sue L. Robinson’s explanation for recommending a six-game suspension for Deshaun Watson is not going over well.
It was a lengthy wait for a disciplinary ruling to be reached regarding Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson, who was accused by multiple women of sexual assault and misconduct during massage therapy sessions.
NFL disciplinary officer and judge Sue L. Robinson reportedly recommended that Watson receive a six-game suspension without pay for violating the league’s personal conduct policy.
As for the reasoning behind the decision, Robinson’s decision was released, where she concluded that “although this is the most significant punishment ever imposed on an NFL player for allegations of non-violent sexual conduct, Mr. Watson’s pattern of conduct is more egregious than any before reviewed by the NFL.”
We recommend you read the full 16-page ruling, which you can view here, courtesy of Pro Football Talk.
Judge describes reasoning behind six-game suspension recommendation for Deshaun Watson
Robinson also concludes that Watson “limit his massage therapy to Club-directed sessions and Club-approved massage therapists for the duration of his career,” and that he “have no adverse involvement with law enforcement.”
While this is a recommendation, the NFL still has the ability to appeal the decision, but most do so in the next three days. The NFLPA released a statement on Sunday, saying that they would not be appealing the decision, but asked the league to make the same commitment.
Watson had criminal charges dropped by a grand jury back in March, and faced 24 civil lawsuits stemming from sexual misconduct allegations. A New York Times report revealed that Watson had received massages from 66 different women in a 17-month period.
20 of the 24 civil suits were settled back in June, and three more were settled on Sunday.
Watson will not be fined, per Robinson’s ruling. That means his $44.9 million signing bonus will not be impacted. He will forfeit $345,000 in salary for missing the first six games of the season, since his base salary for this upcoming campaign is $1.035 million.
Again, we recommend reading the full 16-page ruling by Robinson to get a better understanding the decision of recommending a six-game suspension for Watson.