Browns ‘Deshaun Watson apologizes’ to all the women I’ve impacted’

Cleveland Browns midfielder Deshaun Watson Friday apologized to “all the women I’ve impacted” after being accused by two dozen women of sexual misconduct during massage therapy sessions.

Watson, who is facing the possibility of a year-long NFL suspension, spoke before the opening of Cleveland’s show at Jacksonville – his first game since January 3, 2021, with Houston Texas.

Watson was suspended for six games by independent referee Sue L. Robinson earlier this month, who concluded he violated the league’s individual conduct policy with “severe” and “predatory” conduct.

As part of his decision, the retired federal judge noted Watson has no regrets.

Watson was asked during a pregnancy interview with the team’s internal television crew on Friday about his reaction to Robinson’s views, which he did not at all adhere to.

“Look, I want to say that I’m really sorry to all the women I’ve impacted on this situation,” Watson said in the interview. “The decisions I’ve made in my life put me in this position, which I definitely want to go back to, but I want to keep moving forward and growing, learning and proving that I’m a human being. genuine people and I will continue to push forward.”

This is the first time Watson has publicly apologized for his alleged behaviour. In two media interviews since joining the Browns in March, he has only said he has “no regrets” while acknowledging his actions have negatively affected “a lot of people.”

Watson is accused of sexually harassing or assaulting women during therapy sessions in 2020 and 2021. He has consistently denied wrongdoing, and grand juries in two Texas counties refused to charge him with the charges. criminal complaint.

Pro Bowler three times settled 23 of 24 civil lawsuits.

However, he still faces discipline from the tournament, appeal to Robinson’s punishment and is seeking a full-season ban along with a substantial fine of more than $5 million and requiring Watson to undergo evaluation and treatment before he can be rehabilitated.

The appeal now belongs to Peter C. Harvey, a former New Jersey attorney general appointed by Commissioner Roger Goodell.

There is no timetable for Harvey’s decision. It is also possible that the parties can find a settlement. On Thursday, a person familiar with Watson’s defense told the AP the 26-year-old would agree to a eight-match suspension and $5 million fine.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the high-profile case.

Watson has continued to practice and is excited about his debut with Cleveland, the company traded three first-leg picks for him in March and signed him to a five-year, $230 million contract. dollars.

Depending on Harvey’s verdict, Watson could be away from the Browns for a long time. He was asked what personal growth he hopes to achieve.

“I know I have a lot of work to do, especially on the pitch, to be able to make sure I’m ready to play whenever that moment comes whenever I can step back on the pitch,” he said. . “But beyond that, the most important thing is that I want to continue consulting and I want to make sure I’m growing as a person, as an individual for my decision-making on and off the field. grass.

“I want to make sure I’m growing in the community as much as I can, and that’s for the Cleveland community, that’s the NFL community and beyond.”

If Watson is suspended indefinitely he will not be able to train or compete in pre-season so he is looking forward to facing the Jaguars.

“I’m super excited,” he said. “I’m excited to go out there with my new teammates and go out there and compete. Every moment, I want to make sure I cherish that because I’m not sure the next time I’ll have it. maybe out there with those guys.”

Associated Press report.

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