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Cleveland Browns owners on Deshaun Watson: We trust the legal system

Published: Mar. 25, 2022 at 2:44 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - The Cleveland Browns entered a new era on Friday, introducing Deshaun Watson as their next quarterback.

Along with Watson came controversy, as the 26-year-old is accused by 22 women of sexual assault and harassment.

Two grand juries have declined to indict Watson following police investigations, but the civil procedures involving the quarterback and the women are still ongoing.

The NFL has not yet decided if Watson will face suspensions and other penalties related to the allegations.

Browns owners Dee and Jimmy Haslam, echoing a previously released statement, said they are confident in Watson joining the team.

They also said they trust the due process of the legal system.

“Two different grand juries, in two different counties, looked at nine different criminal cases and decided not to move forward,” Jimmy Haslam said. “We have to trust that process.”

“We put more time, more thought, more effort, talked to more people, did more research on this decision, by far, than any other decision we’ve made with the Cleveland Browns,” Jimmy Haslam said.

The Haslams said they spoke with their daughters and decided to move forward after the whole family was comfortable.

Jimmy Haslam said the Browns will not advise Watson on his ongoing civil cases; Haslam said he’s confident Watson’s legal team will pursue what’s best for him.

Head coach Kevin Stefanski and general manager Andrew Berry joined Watson for remarks Friday during his first appearance in front of the Cleveland media.

The Cleveland Browns acquired Watson in a trade with the Houston Texans earlier this month.

The team also guaranteed $230 million to Watson in a record-breaking NFL contract.

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