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Now that Deshaun Watson’s disciplinary hearing has concluded, the best solution for the NFL and the quarterback's legal team is to reach a settlement before retired judge Sue Robinson issues a decision. Watson was accused of sexual misconduct by 24 women and has settled 20 of the civil lawsuits. A settlement with the NFL would avoid an appeal that undermines the collectively bargained process with a disciplinary officer and prevents a potential court case. The longer the process drags, the messier it can get. And, it’s already ugly.

Deshaun Watson’s disciplinary hearing concluded Thursday with the NFL adamant about an indefinite suspension of at least one year and the quarterback’s legal team arguing there’s no basis for that punishment, two people with knowledge of the case told The Associated Press. Both sides presented their arguments over three days before former U.S. District Judge Sue Robinson in Delaware, according to both people who spoke on condition of anonymity because the hearing isn’t public. Watson was accused of sexual misconduct by 24 women and settled 20 of the civil lawsuits.

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