Deshaun Watson case takes another turn with Houston Texans now implicated

Deshaun Watson's former team the Houston Texans have been accused of facilitating his alleged sexual misconduct with massage therapists.

Tony Buzbee, the lawyer for the 24 women accusing quarterback Deshaun Watson of sexual misconduct, says he will add the Houston Texans as defendants in the lawsuits for facilitating their former player's behaviour.
Two grand juries decided not to proceed with criminal charges against Watson, but after two more women came forward recently he's now facing 24 civil cases of sexual misconduct.

The NFL is also investigating Watson to see if he has violated their code of conduct, but the Cleveland Browns were confident enough in his innocence to sign him to a record $230m fully guaranteed contract for next season.

Watson faces a suspension if the NFL find against him, and as his civil cases evolve his former team the Houston Texans are now facing scrutiny following a New York Times report that the team not only knew of his behaviour but enabled him.

The report states that the Texans supplied nondisclosure agreements that Watson had his massage therapists sign before meetings, while also claiming the team provided the hotel room where these alleged incidents took place.

Texans and others to be added as defendants

Now, the plaintiffs' lawyer Buzbee says they will "soon be joining the Houston Texans organization and others as defendants" in the cases against Watson.
"What has become clear is that the Houston Texans organisation and their contracting 'massage therapy company' facilitated Deshaun Watson's conduct," Buzbee added in a statement.
"In many of these cases, the Texans provided the opportunity for this conduct to occur. We believe the Texans organization was well aware of Watson's issues, but failed to act. They knew or certainly should have known.
"We intend to make sure all involved in Watson's conduct are held accountable, in addition to and including Watson himself."
It's a disturbing turn of events for the Texans, who saw Watson refuse to play for them for the whole of last season, before then trading him to the Browns in March.

Did Browns do their due diligence?

The latest developments also cast a doubt over just how thorough the Cleveland Browns had been in their due diligence before handing out the biggest guaranteed contract in NFL history.
Both the Browns and indeed Watson's own legal team have been caught by surprise by the latest two women to come forward and join the civil cases against the 26-year-old.
Watson's lawyer Rusty Hardin admitted: "We are unable to respond to the new lawsuit at this time.
"Our legal team has not had time to investigate this new filing and had not heard her name until today.
"Deshaun continues to deny he did anything inappropriate with any of the plaintiffs."

Watson has always protested his innocence, but the Browns must now be wondering if handing him such a huge and unique contract was a wise move given his off-field issues.

They'll be as eager as anyone to firstly find out what sanctions the NFL will impose, if any, before then watching the result of these now 24 civil cases of sexual misconduct.
READ MORE: Cleveland Browns defend handing record deal to Deshaun Watson

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