The NFL has refused to accept Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson’s six-game suspension. The league wants a lengthy suspension.
On Monday, retired federal judge Sue L. Robinson issued her decision on Watson, who has been accused of sexual misconduct by more than two dozen female massage therapists.
“Under the 2020 NFL-NFLPA CBA, the Disciplinary Officer’s factual findings are binding and cannot be appealed,” an NFL spokesperson said. “Judge Robinson found that Mr. Watson repeatedly violated the NFL’s Personal Conduct Policy and suspended him for six games.”
However, the NFL continued, “The CBA affords the NFL or NFLPA the right to appeal the discipline imposed by the Disciplinary Officer.”
Commissioner Roger Goodell or a designee of his choosing may hear any appeal. The NFL has informed the Players Association that it will exercise its right to appeal the punishment, and Goodell will select the designee at a later point.
In the past, Goodell has acted as both a judge and a jury in order to enact consequences on players. By appealing, the NFL returns that authority to Goodell, who can appoint another person to impose any punishment.
According to multiple reports Wednesday, the NFL is pushing for an indefinite suspension of at least 12 months.
According to ESPN, the league is now also seeking a monetary fine, which is noteworthy given Watson’s five-year, $230 million deal with the Browns. Watson will only end up losing about $345,00 under Robinson’s decision.
Despite the fact that Watson has not been charged with a crime in connection with the allegations, he has resolved civil lawsuits with 23 of his 24 accusers, and the Houston Texans, for whom he played at the time of the alleged events, has decided to settle lawsuits with 30 women.