Amid outcry that Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson was only suspended six games earlier this month for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy, ESPN’s Adam Schefter first reported Thursday that the suspension will be increased to 11 games.
The NFL later formally announced the suspension.
Schefter had reported that the NFL and its players association came to the agreement.
As part of the deal, Watson will be fined $5 million, which will go “support the prevention of sexual misconduct and assault.” An additional $2 million combined from the NFL and the Browns will also go toward the cause.
As part of the punishment, Watson must also “commit to mandatory evaluation and treatment.”
Breaking: NFL and NFLPA reached agreement on an 11-game suspension for Browns QB Deshaun Watson, per sources. The settlement also includes a fine of $5 million that will go to charity. Deal still is not signed but it is agreed to. pic.twitter.com/2dFvcePL9k— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 18, 2022
Watson, who has been accused of sexual misconduct by more than two dozen women, released a statement through the Browns that read, “I’m grateful that the disciplinary process has ended and extremely appreciative of the tremendous support I have received throughout my short time with the Browns organization.
“I apologize once again for any pain this situation has caused. I take accountability for the decisions I made. My focus going forward is on working to become the best version of myself on and off the field and supporting my teammates however possible while I’m away from the team. I’m excited about what the future holds for me in Cleveland.”
Amid the allegations, Watson was traded this offseason to the Browns by the Houston Texans.
The original six-game suspension had been issued by former U.S. district court Judge Sue L. Robinson.
“Deshaun has committed to doing the hard work on himself that is necessary for his return to the NFL,” league commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. “This settlement requires compliance with a professional evaluation and treatment plan, a significant fine, and a more substantial suspension.
“We are grateful to Judge Robinson and Peter Harvey for their efforts in addressing these matters, which laid the foundation for reaching this conclusion.”