Watson accusers get their say

You can see them saying it.

The $230 million contract the Cleveland Browns gave to former Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson was a “big screw you” to the 22 women who have accused him of sexual misconduct.

After Houston traded Watson in March, Cleveland gave him a fully guaranteed $230 million contract. The way the new contract was structured, all but $1 million of Watson’s 2022 salary was put into bonuses so he would not lose that money if he were to be suspended by the NFL.

“It’s just like a big ‘screw you,’” Ashley Solis told HBO’s Soledad O’Brien as part of a “Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel” episode that was to air at 9 p.m. CT on Tuesday . “That’s what it feels like. That we don’t care. He can run and throw, and that’s what we care about.”

Said Ashley Hayes, another accuser interviewed on the show: “It was sick to me. I felt like he’s being rewarded for bad behavior.”

Watson is facing 22 civil suits that accuse him of sexual assault and harassment during massage appointments. Two Houston-area grand juries have declined to indict Watson on criminal charges.

The NFL is still investigating and has made no ruling on a possible suspension for 2022. Watson did not play with the Texans in 2021.

There’s an embedded video in the story if you want a preview. As Sean Pendergast notes, we may be getting close to an NFL decision about whatever discipline they will impose on Watson. He was in Texas last week to meet with NFL officials, with the general impression being that the league is wrapping up its investigation. (Watson has other reasons to come back to Texas as well.) We’ll know soon enough. More from Pendergast about the HBOMax show here.

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5 Responses to Watson accusers get their say

  1. Flypusher says:

    If you are getting massages as legit medical treatment, why do you need NDAs?

    When you go to the doctor for an exam, there’s always at least one other person present, to avoid this situation. Teachers will have office hours with the door open/ others in earshot to avoid these situations. It seems to me that the NFL could save itself a few PR headaches if they instituted a similar policy for players getting massages or any other game-related physical therapy.

  2. Jason Hochman says:

    His football career shouldn’t be impeded because of the allegations. He’s paid for being a good football player. Not a role model.

  3. policywonqueria says:

    Yes, we need total 24-7 full-body surveillance, especially for purported consensual activity to protect from each other from future lawsuit exposure.

    And since marital rape (and accusations thereof) is a thing, especially when people divorce and make tort claims for leverage over the asset split, if not criminal accusations, we need a chaperone in every master and mistress bedroom too. Heygooog or Aleggsa or such. Put every sexual interaction on video with two separate cloud-server backups for the feed and have a NDA with liquidated damages clause to deter future unapproved disclosure, one for each copulator with separate sign-in credentials.

    Where does it stop? And for nonmarrieds, even more so.

    It’s a whole new world of “safe sex.”

  4. Flypusher says:

    That’s quite a leap from harassment/assault to dating and marriage.

  5. Pingback: 23rd lawsuit filed against Deshaun Watson – Off the Kuff

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