The NFL believes Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson’s “blatant predatory behavior” merits a one-season suspension.
• Also read: Deshaun Watson suspended: NFL appeals
• Also read: NFL: Deshaun Watson has been suspended for six games
At least that is the opinion of Commissioner Roger Goodell. The circuit recently appealed Judge Sue L. Robinson’s decision, which recommended a six-game suspension. His investigations had brought the athlete’s inappropriate sexual behavior to light.
Former New Jersey Attorney General Peter C. Harvey will make the final judgment after hearing all the arguments.
“We’ve seen the evidence,” Goodell said Tuesday, according to the NFL Network. [La juge Sue L. Robinson] was very clear about the evidence. There were multiple violations; they were obvious and it was predatory behavior. These are things that we have always considered important to tackle in a responsible way.”
More on NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, who said Tuesday that the league is seeking a tougher sentence for Deshaun Watson because the QB’s actions were “egregious” and “predatory behavior,” via @Jeff_Legwold:https://t.co/hpmyjTyXkD
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 9, 2022
When asked why he appealed the original decision, Goodell simply said it was a league right.
“As you know, this right is part of the collective agreement,” he argued. Any party can certainly challenge and appeal. So we decided it was the right thing to do.”
Watson has been accused by numerous women of engaging in inappropriate sexual acts during massage sessions. While avoiding criminal charges, he was the target of 24 civil lawsuits, 23 of which were settled out of court.
Watson was acquired from the Houston Texans by the Browns this year. He has since agreed to a five-year contract extension worth $230 million. In four NFL seasons – all with Houston – he completed 67.8 percent of his passes for 14,539 yards, 104 touchdowns and 36 interceptions. He was invited to the Pro Bowl three times.