‘I think we’ve learned a lot’: NFL executive addresses controversy surrounding Deshaun Watson

Judge grants motion to identify one of Deshaun Watson’s accusers in sexual misconduct cases
Judge grants motion to identify one of Deshaun Watson’s accusers in sexual misconduct cases

HOUSTON – The NFL has remained relatively quiet on the allegations made against Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson, other than confirming the league will indeed be conducting an investigation.

Saturday, a league executive spoke about the lawsuits. NFL Executive Vice President of Operations Troy Vincent discussed the situation on Fox Sports’ “Up On Game” podcast, hosted by Lavar Arrington, Plaxico Burress, and T.J. Houshmandzadeh. Vincent was asked how the league would navigate what’s going on with Watson.

“I think we’ve learned a lot, I’ve been part of it, from Ray Rice, on how we look at violence towards women, or the allegations of violence against women,” Vincent said. “Lisa Friel has led our investigations there, and every case is different, and rather than assuming and jumping out there, you get all the facts in.”

“Lisa (Friel) will now come back to our leadership team, ‘Here are the facts,’ and then you can determine the appropriate accountability if any,” he added.

Friel’s findings will be key, as the league can still suspend Watson regardless of what happens in the civil or criminal process.

“I’m just praying for the young man,” Vincent continued, “I’m praying for him and his family. I’m praying for the young ladies that have came out. This is not good for anybody, forget the sport.

“But I think we’ve learned that every situation is different,” he added. “They’re delicate. You make sure that folks, whether it’s the accuser, the victim, whoever it may be, that there’s a due process in place. And I think we’ve learned that over time, not that we’ve rushed in the past, but I think we’ve learned from the different cases that we’ve seen with this particular subject matter, let the due process take care of itself, then that’s up to Lisa (Friel) and her team to make the proper recommendations to what direction the Commissioner and the Commissioner’s office should take.”