The NFL Players Association has not appealed the six-game suspension imposed on Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson. So, unless the appeal filed by the NFL results in no suspension (very unlikely), Watson will miss the first six weeks of the regular season.
The question is whether he will return in week seven, in Baltimore. If a longer suspension is imposed on him by appeal and a lawsuit challenging the league’s process is filed, he will return no earlier than Week Seven – if the lawsuit produces the desired results.
Until the first week, he can train and play. According to a source with knowledge of the situation, the Browns plan to use Watson during the preseason. Whether he plays in all three games and the extent of his playing time remains to be seen.
There is one last thing to remember. The appeal could result in an immediate suspension of at least one year. A ban of this duration may result in Watson’s immediate ban.
The Browns will play the Jaguars next Friday. They host the Eagles and Bears in Weeks 2 and 3 of the preseason, respectively.