DeShaun Watson practices as the Browns prep Jacoby Brissett for the Bills

DeShaun Watson practices as the Browns prep Jacoby Brissett for the Bills

Berea, Ohio — Deshaun Watson practiced with cleveland browns On a Wednesday for the first time since August 30. But with the quarterback sidelined for two more games as part of his 11-game suspension, coach Kevin Stefanski said the team’s priority is preparing the quarterback. Jacoby Brissett to play.

“It’s on to the next step” [Watson], “It’s good to have him back on the field,” Stefanski said.

Since October 10, Watson has been allowed to attend team meetings and workouts at the Browns’ training facility. But by Wednesday, Watson had left the training facility while Brown took drills, throwing and drills on his own.

Watson also participated in a walkthrough of the team earlier on Wednesday. Stefanski declined to say how many first-team snaps Watson would receive over the next two practice weeks leading up to his return in Week 13. houston texans On 4 December.

But Brissett said he was confident he would be ready to play against England on Sunday buffalo bill and then against the 27th of November tampa bay buccaneers Even if it alienates the practice reps with Watson.

Brissett, who was Cleveland’s starter during Watson’s suspension, said, “It’s not my job to balance it. It’s the coach’s job to balance how he divides things.” “I just have to go out there and prepare how I always prepare, do my job and then control what I can control.”

Pro Bowl running back Nick Chubb He said he did not think the two quarterbacks splitting practice reps would become awkward, though he also said the players are “excited to see Deshaun come out, get some reps and see how he does.”

“You guys already know what kind of quarterback he is,” Browns cornerback denzel ward Added. “Definitely exciting to have him back. Looking forward to seeing him out there today and getting him out there for the Games.”

On August 18, the NFL and the NFL Players Association settled on an 11-game suspension of Watson for violating the league’s personal conduct policy by sexually assaulting a massage therapist, as defined by the NFL. He was also fined $5 million and made to undergo a mandatory treatment program.

Watson has been accused by more than two dozen women of sexual assault and other inappropriate sexual misconduct during massage sessions. During the summer, Watson agreed to settle 23 of the 24 civil lawsuits against him. The 25th suit was dropped by the plaintiff when the judge ruled that his petition was to be amended with his name. Two other women filed criminal complaints against Watson but did not prosecute him.

On October 13, another woman filed a lawsuit against Watson, saying he forced oral sex on her during a massage session in 2020. Two weeks later, Watson’s attorneys filed a series of court exhibits as evidence of intent to reduce the charge.

Earlier this year, two grand juries in Texas declined to pursue criminal charges against Watson. But an independent arbitrator appointed jointly by the league and the players’ union, Sue L. Robinson found that “the NFL bore the burden of proving by a preponderance of the evidence that Mr. Watson engaged in sexual harassment.” Robinson also concluded in his report that Watson’s behavior was “arrogant” and “predatory”.

Watson has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing and has said that people are not interested in hearing his side of the story. He still has not spoken publicly since his suspension was announced.

The Browns traded for Watson in March, sending three first-round draft picks to the Texans. Cleveland also signed Watson to a five-year deal with $230 million guaranteed, the richest contract in NFL history.

Watson hasn’t played in a regular season game since 2020, sitting out last year while awaiting a trade to Houston.

The Browns (3-6) head to Buffalo this weekend, trying to keep their slim playoff hopes alive. ESPN’s Football Power Index gives the Browns just a 4.5% chance to make the post-season.

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