AP sources: Decision in Deshaun Watson discipline case expected Monday


Editor’s Note: The following story deals with sexual assault, and may be distressing for some readers.

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A decision on discipline for Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson following accusations of sexual misconduct is coming Monday.

Two people with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press that retired judge Sue L. Robinson has informed the NFL and the NFL Players’ Association she’s ready to issue a ruling on Watson’s disciplinary hearing that concluded a month ago. They spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the discussions are private.

Watson was accused of sexual harassment and assault by 24 massage therapists in Texas and has settled 20 of the civil lawsuits filed against him. Four lawsuits remain pending and the attorney representing the women has said he hopes to take them to trial sometime next spring.

Two separate Texas grand juries declined to indict Watson on criminal complaints stemming from the allegations.

Watson, who played for four seasons with Houston before being traded to Cleveland in March, has been practicing with the Browns while Robinson has spent weeks trying to determine whether the three-time Pro Bowl quarterback violated the NFL’s personal conduct policy and whether to impose discipline.

The league argued for an indefinite suspension of at least one year during a three-day hearing in Delaware last month. The union pushed for no punishment, though a person familiar with Watson’s defense told the AP in June that a suspension is expected and the goal is to have Watson play this season.

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