Next step for Deshaun Watson starts this week

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The Cleveland Browns got closure and clarity with one quarterback last week and are hoping they are close to getting the same with another this week or next.

Browns training camp starts in just over two weeks. Last week, the team moved Baker Mayfield to the Carolina Panthers after months of speculation. Cleveland will pay a majority of the contract while Mayfield gave up money to make the deal happen.

Now the team, and fans, are looking for a resolution with their new quarterback, Deshaun Watson. Watson’s disciplinary hearing ended just before the long July 4th weekend with only a little bit of information coming out. Alongside Mike Florio’s multiple reports (which can be found here and here in new windows), we also got this report:

So the next step for Watson’s case is for both sides to submit their briefs to Judge Sue Robinson sometime this week.

While Florio stated, in a video post, that he wouldn’t surprised if Watson is not suspended at all, there is great uncertainty about what direction Robinson will go.

After the briefs are submitted, Robinson’s ruling is the next step unless the two sides negotiate a settlement. A settlement seems unlikely.

If Robinson finds that Watson did not violate the league’s policy, the case is closed. If she finds that he did violate the policy, either side can choose to appeal the decision back to the NFL and Roger Goodell. It has been reported that the NFL would prefer not to appeal the first decision Robinson makes.

One step this week could lead to the next step, the ruling, later this week or sometime next week. No clarity or conclusion yet but one more step forward at least.