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NFL says Deshaun Watson settlements have no impact on potential suspension

Vincent Frank

Some major news broke earlier on Tuesday relating to Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson and the two dozen women who have filed civil cases alleging sexual misconduct.

The attorney representing the women, Tony Buzbee, annouced that 20 of his clients have come to an agreement on a financial settlement with the three-time Pro Bowl quarterback.

“Today I announce that all cases against Deshaun Watson, with the exception of four, have settled. We are working through the paperwork related to those settlements. Once we have done so, those particular cases will be dismissed. The terms and amounts of the settlements are confidential.

Tony Buzbee on settlements between Deshaun Watson, accusers

There are now four cases remaining againt Watson in civil court with two other women who have since come forward accusing sexual misconduct on the part of the quarterback.

While no criminal charges have been filed in the cases after grand juries in Texas recommended against it, the NFL works under its own justice system. There’s still a darn good chance that Watson will face a significant ban from the league given the disturbing nature of the allegations. These latest developments don’t change that.

Related: Houston Texans push back against possibility Deshaun Watson trade could be reversed

NFL releases a statement following latest Deshaun Watson news

cleveland browns' deshaun watson
Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

“Today’s development has no impact on the collectively bargained disciplinary process,” NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said in a statement, via Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com.

This is in no way a surprise. As noted earlier, the NFL works under the umbrella of its own justice system. We’ve seen multiple players be suspended despite criminal charges not being filed.

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Dallas Cowboys star running back Ezekiel Elliott is the most prominent example of this. Back in 2017, Elliott was suspended for six games after an allegation of domestic violence was levied in his direction. Said suspension came despite authorities opting against filing criminal charges against the Cowboys star. It led to a major tit-for-tat between the NFL and NFLPA.

As for Deshaun Watson, reports suggest that he could face a year-long suspension. With the NFL nearing the end of its investigation, a decision on this is set to come later in the summer.