The NFL has handed Cleveland Browns’ quarterback Deshaun Watson a six-game suspension for non-criminal allegations.
Watson will begin serving his six-game suspension for violating the league’s personal conduct policy in Week 1.
Disciplinary officer Sue L. Robinson made the ruling on Monday after issuing a 15-page conclusion that indicated there was not enough evidence to justify an indefinite suspension.
Both the NFL and the NFLPA have three days to submit an appeal in writing.
The players’ union issued a statement on Sunday that it would “stand by” Robinson’s ruling while urging Roger Goodell and the NFL to do the same.
Watson Received Six-Game Suspension
Watson’s suspension comes after the 25 women came forward with accusations of sexual assault against the Browns’ quarterback.
One of the 25 lawsuits has been dropped and Watson has settled with 23 of the 24 remaining lawsuits.
How Much Will Watson’s Suspension Cost Him?
While Watson will be suspended for nearly half of the upcoming NFL season, his new contract with the Browns helps mitigate the cost of missing regular season games.
Watson’s current contract with the Browns will pay him a base salary of just over $1 million during the 2022-23 NFL season.
As a result, Watson’s six-game suspension will cost him only $345,000, far less than the financial penalty had his suspension been served last year while he was a member of the Houston Texans.
Deshaun Watson's 6 game suspension will cost him $345,000 in 2022 salary.
He'll earn $45.65M this year, and is guaranteed another $184M through the 2026 season.https://t.co/Nlmv2hrkDi
— Spotrac (@spotrac) August 1, 2022
To put this into perspective, the MLB suspended pitcher Trevor Bauer two full seasons (324 games) for non-criminal assault allegations, which is set to cost the Dodgers’ pitcher $60 million in lost wages.
Who Will The Browns Start at QB in Week 1
With their franchise quarterback suspended to start the year, the Browns will need to find an answer under center for the first six games of the NFL regular season.
Veteran signal-caller Jacoby Brissett is expected to be the incumbent starter while Watson is injured.
Last season, Brissett threw for 1,283 yards with five touchdowns and four interceptions while leading the Miami Dolphins to a 2-4 record in six starts.
The Browns also signed former first-round pick Josh Rosen, who is expected to compete with Brissett for the No. 2 quarterback job.