In a somewhat surprising development, Houston Texans QB Deshaun Watson is both present and practicing at the first day of the team's training camp today. We found out yesterday that Watson would be in attendance, presumably to avoid the $50,000 per day fine the organization can levy if he refused to show. It was in question what he would actually do or if he would even step on the field, but in the early hours of Wednesday Watson was out there taking snaps and chatting with teammates.
Here's some video.
Watson's desire to be traded stands despite his attendance. That will almost certainly not happen, of course, until Watson's legal situation is sorted out. Over the summer, nearly two dozen women filed civil suits accusing Watson of sexual assault and harassment. Earlier this week, it was reported that 10 of those women filed criminal complaints against the star quarterback, including two who had not filed civil suits, bringing the total number of accusers to 24. The NFL also released a statement saying they were in the midst of their own investigation into the situation to determine if Watson violated the code of personal conduct; in the past, such violations have resulted in a suspension.
It is a very strange situation. Watson is out amongst his teammates while he's being investigated by the league for sexual assault allegations and his lawyer is battling civil suits and criminal complaints. It would be strange even without those significant off-the-field problems, given that Watson clearly has no intention of playing a down for the Texans ever again yet is out there anyway.
Nobody knows how everything will pan out or what the timeline looks like. But in the meantime, everyone in the Houston organization has to pretend everything is normal and work alongside Watson like nothing is wrong. Very strange indeed.