Texans’ Deshaun Watson skipping OTAs, still wants to be traded amid lawsuits, NFL investigation, per report


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Deshaun Watson is still under investigation by the NFL while facing 22 civil lawsuits alleging sexual assault or misconduct. It remains to be seen if and when he’ll return to the field. The Pro Bowl quarterback has not yet been suspended amid his legal situation, however, so he could technically report to Texans OTAs in preparation for the 2021 season. According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, Watson will do no such thing, as the QB intends to skip the voluntary offseason program and still wants to be traded.

“Watson has denied wrongdoing related to recent lawsuits, which have slowed the process of sorting out his future,” Pelissero said Monday. “But his position hasn’t changed: Watson wants out of Houston.”

Watson has reportedly been angling for a trade from the Texans since early this offseason. Houston was both publicly and privately reluctant to engage in speculation — or negotiations — about his future outside of the Texans prior to the lawsuits. For months now, the accusations of Watson — all stemming from private therapy sessions — have rendered additional trade talks all but irrelevant. The Houston Chronicle, for example, has reported multiple times that the Texans have still had no negotiations regarding a potential Watson deal because of the lawsuits, which ProFootballTalk reports could soon lead to the QB landing on the commissioner’s exempt list, where he’d essentially be on paid leave.

In any event, the former first-round draft pick doesn’t appear long for Houston. It’s possible Watson could still face a lengthy NFL suspension, even if the QB is never criminally charged for his alleged misconduct. Even if he were to be cleared of wrongdoing, settle his cases or avoid a suspension, he’s reportedly been resolute about wanting to play elsewhere. The Texans have all but confirmed as much with their actions, using their first pick of the 2021 draft on QB Davis Mills and signing former Chargers starter Tyrod Taylor, who enters the offseason as the presumptive stopgap under center.





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