There’s a lot to do – and nothing to do – lately in the endless drama of Deshaun Watson and his future in football.
Rumors recently started by “NFL insiders” have Watson as a forfeit with highly sought-after coach Brian Flores, Watson to the Minnesota Vikings, Watson to the New York Giants, Watson to the Carolina Panthers.
“Developing Story: Deshaun Watson and Brian Flores have been in constant communication trying to navigate a storyline where they go on the same team, per sources.”
“Sources tell me the biggest sleeper in the Deshaun Watson contest was the Minnesota Vikings.”
“As the Panthers continue to search for their quarterback of the future, a trade (for) Deshaun Watson remains an option.”
“After extensive research into the situations of Coach Flores and Deshaun Watson, sources familiar with the situation say that Flores and Watson have had no contact. Flores and Watson do not have phone numbers either. the other.
That’s a few sources you have there. A better way to put it, we’re back at Square One with the prospect of Watson going nowhere and doing nothing for another increasingly possible year. Again, sources.
There’s still the matter of 22 civil lawsuits filed by masseuses accusing Watson of sexual misconduct. Additionally, a grand jury is considering the case, which could expose Watson to criminal charges and a trial. The grand jury’s decision is expected soon.
Here’s what we know for sure, and by sure we mean anyone’s guess how it goes.
Tony Buzbee, attorney for the 22 women who filed civil lawsuits against Watson, said he will depose Watson over several days in February and March. Sessions are scheduled for February 24 and 25, February 28, March 1, March 8 and 9, and March 22 and 23. The interrogation will begin at 10 a.m. each day in Buzbee’s downtown office. The deposition must not exceed 48 hours in total and will be videotaped.
Buzbee, chomping at the bit for this deposition, will make Watson nostalgic for when he was tackled by the Chicago Bears for a safety. I went there, dropped off at a law firm. It is an excruciating experience. The newspaper I worked for was being sued and the plaintiff wanted to know what I knew. I was groomed, told that opposing counsel would try to anger me into cracking under the pressure and saying something stupid. I was grilled for about four hours, during which the same question was asked 1,000 times in 1,000 different ways. I did my best Sgt. Imitation of Schultz, “I don’t know anything”, which turned out to be the truth. I was closer to a typist in the court reporter pool than a boardroom manager in that newspaper.
Given the case’s high publicity, laughable security measures, and wacky stunts on both sides, I expect the videotapes of Watson’s deposition to be released on YouTube at 6 p.m.
Recently, a detailed copy of a $100,000 settlement offer by Watson to one of the accusers last October was leaked. Who leaked it? Suspects are limited to all actors in this B-movie, straight-to-cable drama.
Like those “NFL insiders” speculating on Watson’s future, I too have my sources. I don’t mean to brag, but my sources are just as unreliable as theirs.
Here’s a scenario: The grand jury says the charges against Watson are worthy of a trial. Watson is found guilty of some sort of misdemeanor and pays a heavy fine. The NFL places him on the commissioner’s exemption list and waives Watson for part, most or all of the 2022 season. Other teams drop trades for Watson and he remains with the Texans who are expected to pay him for 2022 .
Either Watson is innocent, the grand jury says there is not enough evidence for a trial to proceed, the women drop their civil lawsuits, and Watson is free and clear to pursue his career.
It’s a draw, and you know how much football fans love draws these days.