Here is the problem the NFL has with Deshaun Watson.
Out of the 30 or so women accusing Watson of massage misconduct according to the NFL 4-5 have really strong cases with evidence backing up their claims.
Those claims according to the NFL warrant at least a one-year suspension and that is what they are pushing.
The problem that they have is Robert Kraft was caught on 4k paying for happy endings and had to fight really hard to get the tapes destroyed and the case dismissed. The NFL didn’t punish Kraft. There have also been incidents where owners and front office people have done wrongdoing and nothing has happened.
No one is saying two wrongs make a right, but it is a strong defense that an independent arbitrator may take into consideration. WSJ has an update on what the NFL would like to do.
The NFL is pushing for an indefinite suspension that would last no shorter than one year for Watson, people familiar with the matter said. That would mean he would be out for one season, at least, before he could apply to be reinstated.
An indefinite suspension would also give the NFL the flexibility to keep him out for longer based on a variety of factors, including whether more cases surface, the people said.
The league’s belief that it should institute what is essentially the strictest discipline it can assess is based on its investigation over the last year, the breadth of the allegations against him and some accusations that NFL officials have concluded are particularly damning. While the league’s arguments include the broad array of the accusations against Watson—in addition to the 24 lawsuits, other women have accused him of wrongdoing without taking civil action against him—officials have zeroed in on five of the alleged victims whose cases they believe include the strongest evidence.
The league will focus on those five cases as it argues for the significant ban. Those cases include contemporaneous corroboration, such as text messages, of the women’s accounts, two of the people said. League officials believe those allegations in particular are objectively provable and establish a clear and disturbing pattern of behavior from Watson.
The union and Watson’s lawyers, meanwhile, are preparing an aggressive defense of the quarterback as they push back against a suspension that they believe is unprecedented. They will argue that any such punishment would be inconsistent with what has been levied against players and owners in the past, one of the people said.
What do you think?
How long should Deshaun Watson be suspended for?