Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson unloads on critics

Deshaun Watson doesn't have time for doubters
Cleveland Browns, Deshaun Watson
Cleveland Browns, Deshaun Watson / Nick Cammett/GettyImages

Cleveland Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski recently said he wants to see the "best version of Deshaun Watson" in 2024. The quarterback wants the same thing and he believes he can still get it done.

Watson also knows there are a lot of doubters out there. He recently spoke on the criticism on his podcast, "QB Unplugged," and had some harsh words for those who think he's no longer the player he was in Houston.

“I don’t live for other people’s expectations. I could care less about what anybody else has to say. None of that s–t really matters to me,” Watson said on the most recent episode 'QB Unplugged'. “Even if I got love for you, respectfully, but disrespectfully, I don’t give two f–ks about what you think. I got my own expectations and my expectation is to be a world champion one day"

Watson can use all the colorful language he wants but this is the reality of playing quarterback in the NFL. When your team wins, you get the praise. When they don't win, you get the blame. He now found out there's another category — when you're hurt and the team wins, you get questioned.

Deshaun Watson thinks criticism isn't about football

While every NFL quarterback has gone through their share of criticism, Watson doesn't think his is all about football. He said people can have their own opinions but that he has the talent to win.

"People are going to have their own opinions, but I’m to the point where [I feel] it ain’t even about football for most people anymore." — Watson on his critics.

There's no denying Watson has more vitriol than most QBs but it's his own fault. His actions led to an 11-game suspension from the NFL after he was accused of 24 counts of sexual misconduct. His lack of remorse made a bad situation even worse.

As true as that is, there's plenty of criticism that is 100 percent rooted in football.

Watson was signed to a fully guaranteed $230 million deal after the Browns surrendered a boatload of picks, including three first-rounders. Since that trade in 2022, he's appeared in 12 games and has completed 59.8 percent of his attempts for 2,217 yards. He has 14 touchdowns and nine picks and the Browns are 8-4 with him under center.

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Simply put, those aren't numbers you pay $230 million for. Watson was paid to be an elite quarterback and to this point, he's been overshadowed by Jacoby Brissett and Joe Flacco. He can blame it on outside influences and claim he still has it all he wants but unless he proves it on the field, we'll be talking about Jameis Winston outshining him as well before long.

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