The rumors continue to swirl that the Miami Dolphins are looking to trade for quarterback Deshaun Watson from the Houston Texans. The latest report from the Houston Chronicle’s John McClain indicates that the Dolphins and Texans have agreed on the compensation needed for a deal to be made, though there are still obstructions to completing the deal.
The deal will be expensive for the Dolphins, though it may not be quite as much as Houston had been demanding. McClain writes: “The Texans should get the three first-round picks they’ve been asking for, but [Texans general manager Nick] Caserio might have to accept lesser picks than the second-round selections he’s demanded.”
Watson is currently facing 22 civil lawsuits stemming from sexual assault and misconduct allegations, many of the anonymous accusers are licensed massage therapists. There is also an ongoing criminal investigation by the Houston Police Department investigating a complaint against Watson.
With those allegations factoring into the trade, and any future on-field availability for Watson, the Dolphins are looking for assurances from the league. McClain indicates that Dolphins owner Stephen Ross has approved a trade for Watson, but “wants his legal issues resolved.” In other words, Ross seems to want Watson to come to a settlement on the civil lawsuits. So far, it has seemed as though Watson has resisted coming to a settlement because he does not want it to appear as a statement of guilt. He is believed to also want any settlement to be an open settlement, allowing him, and the women, to be able to talk about the case and the settlement, rather than having any deal be sealed with a non-disclosure agreement.
Ross is believed to also be looking to find out what the NFL would consider as a potential suspension for Watson. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell does not appear to be in a hurry to determine what, if any, action the league will take. During the league meetings currently ongoing in New York, Goodell told the media that the league is still waiting to see what happens. “I think that process is still ongoing,” Goodell said according to Pro Football Network’s Adam Beasley. “And until that process [no longer] is ongoing and we have enough data and enough information to make a determination of whether he should go on Commissioner’s Exempt, we don’t feel that we have that necessary information at this point.”
That should clear Watson to play immediately should the Dolphins trade for him, but does not indicate the league will not remove Watson’s availability somewhere down the road.
If the Dolphins are to trade for Watson this season, they have a week to complete the deal. The NFL trade deadline is 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Nov. 2.