The waiting game continues for the ruling on the potential suspension of Deshaun Watson, and if it is a year, he will sue the NFL.
For a lot of people, waiting is one of the hardest things to do on the planet. In the case of the Cleveland Browns and quarterback Deshaun Watson, that’s most certainly the case as training camp nears and there is still no ruling on how many games – if any – Watson will be suspended.
On Monday afternoon, Charles Robinson of Yahoo! Sports dropped a couple of different newsworthy nuggets in regards to Watson and when the ruling could come. Now, many have been saying that Judge Sue L. Robinson could make her ruling anytime from July 25-30.
Robinson noted that Judge Robinson’s ruling could “bump up against – or even overlap” with the first few days of Browns training camp. The rookies report on July 22, while the veterans report on the 28th. He said this could possibly be Judge Robinson giving the NFL and Watson’s camp (along with the NFLPA) to reach a settlement agreement prior to her ruling.
In a follow up tweet, Robinson added that if Watson does indeed get the full-year suspension that the NFL is seeking, he and the NFLPA will file a lawsuit against the league in federal court. This is something that the NFL will try and avoid, despite having success in the federal court system when dealing with other suspensions in the past.
In 2017, Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott filed a lawsuit against the NFL after they gave him a six-game suspension for domestic violence allegations. He filed the suit as he thought the NFL failed to provide him with the basic elements of fundamental fairness, require by law.
While Elliott eventually lost the case, it was prolonged and he played the first eight games of the 2017 NFL season, before being suspended the full six-games after Week 8, and then returned for the final two weeks.
Tom Brady also fought the NFL in court over Deflategate. Initially he won, and was not going to serve any suspension. That was later overruled and then upheld in federal court, which resulted in Brady being suspended for four games due to his involvement in the entire ordeal.
So even if Watson gets the year-long suspension and then files a lawsuit against the NFL, it doesn’t mean he will be suspended, but it could allow him to see the field in 2022.
Now, back to the settlement talk. It would be in the best interest of both the NFL and Watson/NFLPA to reach some sort of settlement prior to Robinson’s ruling, whenever that may be. The NFL has the chance to appeal and Watson’s camp has the threat of a lawsuit.
At this point, it would be best for the league and Watson to agree to a fair punishment and get this all wrapped up so everyone involved can finally move on.
Nobody knows how this will eventually play out, but what we do know is that the end is near. If you are a fan of the Browns and want this all to be over and done with, one way or another (I think we are all at that same viewpoint), then you could very well get your wish within the next 12-days.