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Deshaun Watson: I’m ready to get back on the field

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A grand jury will soon hear evidence in the Deshaun Watson case, but even if the legal system absolves him, he could still face punishment from the NFL.

Deshaun Watson declined to answer questions under oath for the first time in connection with 22 civil lawsuits accusing him of sexual assault and harassment during massage sessions. The Texans quarterback asserted his Fifth Amendment rights to several hundred questions asked by Tony Buzbee, who represents the women who filed suit, during three hours of depositions.

Watson, though, talked to the news media after a Harris County grand jury declined to indict him on criminal charges.

Watson paused for several seconds before issuing a statement.

“It’s definitely a very emotional moment for me,” Watson said, via video from Brooks Kubena of the Houston Chronicle. “I know we’re far from being done of handling what we need to handle on the legal side, but today is definitely a big day. I thank my Lord and savior Jesus Christ for letting the truth be heard. I think everyone knows a part of this is seeing and hearing both sides, and that’s what my point and my team want to do is have a fair slate of us telling our side of the story and letting a conclusion come down to what happened today. That’s what the grand jury decided on. Thank you, and I just thank my Lord and savior. I’m going to keep fighting to rebuild my name and rebuild my appearance in the community. We’re going to continue, on the legal side, I’ll fulfill, handle what we need to handle, but also ready to get back on the field. Been prepping for that and ready to go for that. I thank my family, all my close supporters this past year. I thank my team that’s been behind me, supporting me and keeping me up this past year. Yeah, I’m going to continue to just keep pushing forward and building my name back to where it was if not better.”

Watson said he has not heard from the NFL or the Texans since the grand jury decision.

“Personally, I have not,” Watson said, deferring the question to his agent, David Mulugheta.

The decision by the grand jury on Friday clears the way for the Texans to trade him. A deal could happen quickly as teams were waiting to be certain Watson would not face criminal charges.

Watson, 26, did not play last season as the Texans made him inactive for all 17 games.