Report: NFL Wants to Interview Deshaun Watson Again amid Sexual Misconduct Probe

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVMay 20, 2022

BEREA, OHIO - MARCH 25: Quarterback Deshaun Watson of the Cleveland Browns listens to questions during a press conference introducing him to the Cleveland Browns at CrossCountry Mortgage Campus on March 25, 2022 in Berea, Ohio. (Photo by Nick Cammett/Getty Images)
Nick Cammett/Getty Images

The NFL reportedly wants to interview Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson again as it investigates the allegations of sexual assault and misconduct he is facing from 22 women.

Ed Gallek and Peggy Gallek of Fox 8 Cleveland reported Friday that league investigators already met with Watson this week but are seeking another interview.

"Remaining schedule is unclear but they clearly want to complete it sometime this summer," Watson's attorney, Rusty Hardin, said.

Multiple grand juries ruled in March the Clemson product would not be indicted on criminal charges, but he could still be suspended by the league if it determines he violated its personal conduct policy.

Watson, who Cleveland acquired from the Houston Texans via trade after the first grand jury declined to indict him on criminal charges, is also still facing 22 civil lawsuits accusing him of sexual assault or misconduct during massage therapy sessions.

The Fox 8 report noted the quarterback has given multiple depositions on the cases and was asked if he believes all 22 plaintiffs are lying during one of them.

"I've never had any sexual misconduct with any of these women," Watson said. "I done told you before multiple times from day one I received the lawsuit. I never assaulted; I never harassed; I never disrespected: I never touched: no woman ever touched me, or nothing like that what these women are alleging that actually happened."

Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports reported Tuesday that all 22 civil lawsuits will likely be pushed back to next year given the steps remaining and the agreed-upon moratorium on cases between Aug. 1, 2022, and March 1, 2023.

"The manner of presentation in the cases could make the trials significantly longer than expected," Robinson reported, noting Watson's side could respond to each allegation individually if evidence from multiple allegations are introduced for individual proceedings.

Hardin told Fox 8 "there is no timetable" for when the NFL will complete its investigation, however, it seems likely the league will want to make a decision before the start of the 2022 season.