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'Let's deal with the biggest issue in this case': 3News' Jim Donovan gives update on disciplinary hearings for Cleveland Browns QB Deshaun Watson

'Think along with me because it looks like we’ve got the time before this thing wraps up.'

CLEVELAND — As the disciplinary hearings for Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson enter the third day, 3News' Jim Donovan -- the voice of the Browns -- offers his take on what's next.

Will Watson be suspended indefinitely? Will it be for just a few games?

“Let’s deal with the biggest issue in the case – and it is not a suspension of eight games or a whole season," Donovan said. "Really, this is the big issue. There is no way a final decision can be rendered without the outstanding civil lawsuits against Watson being settled. Really, I see no way this can end without all of those cases coming to an end. There needs to be finality in that chapter. There’s no other way. I would think negotiations to reach that conclusion have to be going on daily.”

Watson settled most of the lawsuits against him last week.

So what's next?

"Play along with me on this next point," Donovan continued. "With reports of Watson likely being suspended for a year or indefinitely popping up everywhere over the last two weeks, wouldn’t you think the Browns would be in a panic? Wouldn’t you think they would be out into the marketplace looking for another quarterback? Now, I know they have Jacoby Brissett, but come on. If you believed Watson was never going to play a down for you this year, you’d have to be looking to make the quarterback position better, stronger and you might even have to extend a hand to Baker Mayfield. And yet, through all of the OTA practices and the mandatory minicamp, there was Deshaun Watson taking over 80 percent of the first team snaps – maybe even more. If you believed he wasn’t going to play at all, getting him ready for the start of this season might be pointless – don’t you think?"

As for the final outcome of the disciplinary action, Donovan said it could take some time.

"Everything in this world is negotiated. Even cases like this. I think negotiations are going on in Delaware and that’s how this will come to an end. So think along with me because it looks like we’ve got the time before this thing wraps up."

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Editor's note: Video in the player above was originally published in a previous story on June 29, 2022.

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