‘That’s just not my business’: Deshaun Watson’s Cleveland Browns teammate avoid suspension discussion – The Columbus Dispatch


BEREA – There’s no quarterback controversy in the purest sense of the phrase with the Browns. There is a controversy surrounding their quarterback, at least the one who was acquired to be the face of their franchise.

The Browns learned on Monday that Deshaun Watson, their franchise quarterback, would be suspended six games by the independent disciplinary officer Sue L. Robinson. There remains a chance the NFL could appeal the decision and seek a longer suspension, a decision which would have to be made in writing by 9 a.m. Thursday.

“Coach [Kevin] Stefanski addressed the team and let everybody know the situation,” center Nick Harris said Tuesday. “Everybody has full faith in Jacoby [Brissett]. He has come to work every day and been about his business trying to prepare.”

Robinson’s 16-page decision was a topic of conversation for many around the country when it was released Monday. That conversation, at least publicly, didn’t extend to within the Browns locker room.

Browns players were not made available to the media on Monday. On Tuesday, they continued to distance themselves from any direct conversation about Watson’s off-the-field troubles.

“That’s just not my business,” linebacker Anthony Walker Jr. said Tuesday. “I feel like that’s Deshaun’s stuff to take care of. Got to let the legal process handle itself and I didn’t want to put myself in that situation. It’s football here for us and he handles it the way he needs to handle it.”

The question was raised to Walker about how a franchise quarterback’s well-publicized off-the-field troubles shouldn’t at least register some concern from his teammates. The Browns players have been answering a bulk of the questions about Watson dating back to the start of the offseason program in April in lieu of the quarterback himself talking.

So, isn’t a franchise quarterback’s business also the whole team’s business?

“That’s a great question,” Walker said. “I wouldn’t say that. At the end of the day we’re all a part of this organization and a part of this team and we all have a job to do. That’s not everybody’s job to worry about somebody else’s job. We have our own job to do.”

Walker and Brissett were both asked if they had a chance to read Robinson’s decision. Both said they had not and, in fact, likely would not.

Brissett may spend as much time as anyone with Watson, at least within the facility. It’s Brissett who will be the starting quarterback while Watson is suspended.

That means, if anyone on the team is able to get a read on Watson’s mood, it’s Brissett.

“Well, it’s been ‘a’ day so he’s been good,” Brissett said. “Obviously, tough news but [he] can only go forward, right?”

One individual who did read the report was Stefanski. The Browns coach had not seen the full report when he addressed the media following Monday’s practice, some seven-plus hours after the decision was announced.