The NFL has appealed Judge Sue Robinson’s recommendation that Deshaun Watson be suspended six games for violating the league’s Personal Conduct Policy.
According to Mike Florio of Pro Football Focus, Commissioner Roger Goodell will appoint someone outside the league office to hear the appeal.
Robinson issued her recommendation that Watson be suspended six games this past Monday. The NFL and the players’ union both had three days to appeal the decision. The union had pre-announced on Sunday that it would not contest the judge’s ruling.
Many observers around the league felt that six games was not enough, given that two dozen women had accused Watson of sexual assault or misconduct. In the days leading up to Robinson’s decision, ESPN’s Dan Graziano reported that the league and Watson attempted to negotiate a settlement and that talks broke down because the league was seeking a 12-game suspension and an $8 million fine.
Because of the way the Cleveland Browns structured Watson’s record-breaking contract this spring, he would lose $345,000 by sitting out six games this season.
Meanwhile, Tony Buzbee, the attorney who represents Watson’s accusers, scheduled a press conference for 2 p.m. ET on Wednesday With some of the plaintiffs. Earlier this week, he told ESPN’s “First Take” that he was hoping the league would appeal but didn’t expect it “to do anything heroic.” Most of the women have settled their cases against Watson.